Underground » Health and Safety
The aim of this project was to develop a real time respirable dust monitor that could differentiate between respirable crystalline silica (RCS) and coal dust. To this end the instrument that was trailed shows a difference in each of three traces for the increased amounts of RCS in the coal samples. Significant downtime of components compromised the efficacy of the tests and only limited testing could be achieved within the budget.
The real time Cavity Ring Down Spectrometer (rtCRDS) did demonstrate that it could detect and differentiate levels of RCS and showed a rapid response to an injection of a large quantity of dust.
Developments in the technology that was used to construct the rtCRDS have produced more reliable components that can lead to a more reliable device. With a more substantial budget and extensive tests the rtCRDS could be developed further into a useable device.
Of concern was the levels of RCS reporting to the filters of both the rtCRDS and the control device was less than expected and further research into this should clarify the reasons for this apparent behaviour.