Can sugar dust cause an explosion?

But when dust from high-energy substances, such as sugar, is allowed to accumulate in closed spaces and happens to ignite, it can cause an explosion. The U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board invest- igated three major industrial explosions involving combustible powders.

How do you prevent sugar dust explosions?

Help Prevent Dust Explosions

  1. KNOW THAT MOST DUSTS ARE COMBUSTIBLE.
  2. PROVIDE ACCESS TO ALL HIDDEN AREAS OF YOUR PLANT.
  3. REGULARLY INSPECT FOR DUST BUILDUP.
  4. CLEAN AT REGULAR INTERVALS.
  5. MOVE DUST COLLECTORS OUTSIDE.
  6. ENSURE ELECTRICAL WIRING AND EQUIPMENT IS APPROVED FOR USE IN YOUR DUST HAZARD CONDITIONS.

What caused the explosion at Imperial Sugar refinery?

The explosion was fueled by massive accumulations of combustible sugar dust throughout the packaging building.

Can sawdust explode?

Many common materials which are known to burn can generate a dust explosion, such as coal and sawdust. Powdered metals (such as aluminum, magnesium, and titanium) can form explosive suspensions in air, if finely divided.

Why does sugar burn so easily?

Tiny sugar particles burn up almost instantly because of their high ratio of surface area to volume. If you heat up sugar on the stovetop or in an oven, it will caramelize before it catches fire; this happens as heat drives out water molecules and the sugar molecules link together in long chains.

Is sugar dust harmful?

Inhalation Sugar dust may irritate the nose and throat. destabilise people with diabetes. Skin Skin contact may result in mild skin irritation. Eye Irritating to the eyes and may cause watering and redness.

Is sand dust explosive?

In general, about 70% of dusts are explosive. In addition, non-explosive materials (sand or silica, for example) could become explosive when mixed with other explosive materials (such as organic or metal dust) in sufficient concentration.

Can sugar be used to make an explosive?

It’s easy to forget that sugar can be an explosive. In fact, it’s four times more powerful weight for weight than TNT. In 2008, finely powdered sugar ignited at a refinery in Savannah, Georgia, causing a blast that claimed 14 lives. Fortunately, under normal circumstances it takes a lot to make sugar explode.

Where is Imperial Sugar now?

LSR now operates a state-of-the-art sugar refinery on the Gramercy, Louisiana site. Imperial will continue to operate a small-bag processing facility at Gramercy.

At what temperature does sawdust ignite?

In NFPA 499, Table 4.5. 2, wood flour is listed as a NEC Group G combustible material that requires an ignition temperature of 250 degrees Celsius (482 degrees Fahrenheit). Saw blades should be maintained (sharpened) in a condition such that heat buildup due to friction is minimized.

Is sawdust a combustible dust?

Sawdust can become a combustible dust hazard when conditions are right.

Why does heat burn sugar?

At high temperatures, however, the sugar itself can be set ablaze. Extreme heat forces sucrose to decompose and form a volatile chemical called hydroxymethylfurfural, which easily ignites and sets the rest of the sugar on fire.

How can sugar dust cause an explosion?

The first explosion took place inside this enclosed conveyor belt, when a blockage caused a buildup of sugar dust and an overheated bearing created an ignition spark . This sugar dust explosion traveled throughout the building, causing numerous other explosions as the accumulated dust became airborne and ignited.

What causes a dust explosion?

dust explosion. n. (Chemistry) an explosion caused by the ignition of an inflammable dust, such as flour or sawdust, in the air.

Can there be an explosion caused by dust?

Dust explosions can occur where any dispersed powdered combustible material is present in high-enough concentrations in the atmosphere or other oxidizing gaseous medium, such as pure oxygen. In cases when fuel plays the role of a combustible material, the explosion is known as a fuel-air explosion.

Did a dust explosion occur?

A dust explosion occurs when a finely divided combustible solid is dispersed into the air and subjected to an ignition source or is considered explosible if a dust flame becomes clearly detached from the ignition source. From: Ludwig’s Applied Process Design for Chemical and Petrochemical Plants (Fourth Edition), Volume 1, 2007