Rapid response for elusive dust

A MEXICAN port is keeping on top of its dust problems with the help of a truck-mounted water misting unit that can be relocated in minutes to combat shifting winds.
Rapid response for elusive dust Rapid response for elusive dust Rapid response for elusive dust Rapid response for elusive dust Rapid response for elusive dust


Andy Graham

Veracruz-based Servicios Especiales Portuarios SA (SEPSA) handles more than a million tonnes of bulk cargo per year, including coal and petroleum coke, a coking coal substitute derived from oil refining.

SEPSA has used a DustBoss DB-60 atomised misting unit for dust control since early 2011.

But with frequent, sudden shifts in wind and weather, the unit often had to relocated quickly around the 5-hectare facility.

“We have a large facility and our location is prone to windstorms from the north, known as Los Nortes in Spanish,” SEPSA director Andrew Gillespie said.

“When we have operations running and the wind picks up we need to relocate the DustBoss to accommodate that. It has to happen quickly and easily.”

SEPSA’s solution was to take an old bulk cement tanker truck and trailer and convert it into a mobile dust control system.

A diesel-powered generator was mounted on the front of the tank, now used to hold water, and a DB-60 was mounted on the rear.

Piping and electrical connections were added, along with safety railings and ladders, and the mobile dust controller was ready to go.

The DB-60 has a manifold of 30 brass nozzles that create millions of water droplets per minute within a range of 50-200 microns, the optimum size for particle attraction and coverage area.

A 25-horsepower fan launches the droplets up to 200 feet in calm conditions, allowing 2.8 acres of coverage with an oscillating fan.

SEPSA’s machine also has an optional metering pump built in that allows precise application of a water/cellulose mixture to coal stockpiles.

The mixture forms a thin crust and eliminates dust migration during periods of high winds.

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