Mining Publication: Flammability of Wider Conveyor Belts Using Large-scale Fire Tests
The Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response Act of 2006 (MINER Act) established a Technical study panel (the Panel) to provide recommendations on the utilization of belt air and new technology that may be available for increasing the fire resistance properties of conveyor belt used in underground coal mines. The Panel Report recommended use of the belt evaluation laboratory test (BELT) as the method for testing and approval of flame resistant conveyor belts used in underground coal mines. The research conducted to establish the correlation of the BELT with large-scale belt fire flammability tests was done using 91 - 107 cm (36- to 42-in.) wide conveyor belt. Due to today’s coal haulage capacity, the mining industry is using 183 cm (72 in.) and wider conveyor belts. The U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) conducted a study to determine if the BELT will also qualify wider belts as fire resistant for use in underground coal mines. This paper describes the results of recent experiments comparing results from using the BELT and the large-scale tests for six different belts.