Relegating the 'powder keg' to a thing of the past
More than 70 % of powders processed in industrial plants are combustible. The potential for explosion and fire imposes significant risks not only of financial losses but also injuries and fatalities. Even flour and grain dust have led to catastrophic explosions in mills, often caused by electrostatic discharges. However, characterising and quantifying the rate at which powder flows charge remain a significant challenge. The EU-funded PowFEct project is building on the first-ever simulations that coupled fluid mechanics, surface science and electrostatics successfully revealing that distinct flow mechanisms determine the charging rate of powder. The current work will significantly enhance our understanding through a cycle of experimental and theoretical methodologies leading to the development of a theoretical model and an open-source tool to support safer powder processing in a variety of industrial applications.
Funding SchemeERC-STG - Starting Grant
See on map