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Development of a roof bolter canopy air curtain for respirable dust control

Mining Engineering , 2017, Vol. 69, No. 1, pp. 33-39

Reed, W.R.; Joy, G.J.; Kendall, B.; Bailey, A.; Zheng, Y.


Testing of the roof bolter canopy air curtain (CAC) designed by the U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has gone through many iterations, demonstrating successful dust control performance under controlled laboratory conditions. J.H. Fletcher & Co., an original equipment manufacturer of mining equipment, further developed the concept by incorporating it into the design of its roof bolting machines. In the present work, laboratory testing was conducted, showing dust control efficiencies ranging from 17.2 to 24.5 percent. Subsequent computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis revealed limitations in the design, and a potential improvement was analyzed and recommended. As a result, a new CAC design is being developed, incorporating the results of the testing and CFD analysis.