DBPapers
DOI: 10.5593/sgem2011/s03.118

FULL SCALE TEST FOR EXPLOSION WATER BARRIERS IN SMALL CROSS-SECTION GALLERIES

AUTHOR/S: L.MEDIC PEJIC, E. QUEROL ARAGON, J. GARCIA TORRENT, C. FERNANDEZ RAMON, K. LEBECKI
Monday 1 August 2011 by Libadmin2011

11th International Multidisciplinary Scientific GeoConference SGEM2011, www.sgem.org, SGEM2011 Conference Proceedings/ ISSN 1314-2704, June 20-25, 2011, Vol. 1, 787-794 pp

ABSTRACT

Underground coal mines explosions generally arise from the inflammation of a methane/air mixture. This explosion can also generate a subsequent coal dust explosion.
Traditionally such explosions have being fought eliminating one or several of the factors needed by the explosion to take place. Although several preventive measures are taken to prevent explosions, other measures should be considered to reduce the effects
or even to extinguish the flame front. Unlike other protection methods that remove one or two of the explosion triangle elements, namely; the ignition source, the oxidizing agent and the fuel, explosion barriers removes all of them: reduces the quantity of coal
in suspension, cools the flame front and the steam generated by vaporization removes the oxygen present in the flame.

Passive water barriers are autonomous protection systems against explosions that reduce to a satisfactory safety level the effects of methane and/or flammable dust explosions.
The barriers are activated by the pressure wave provoked in the explosion destroying the barrier troughs and producing a uniform dispersion of the extinguishing agent throughout the gallery section in quantity enough to extinguish the explosion flame.
Full scale tests have been carried out in Polish Barbara experimental mine at GIG Central Mining Institute in order to determine the requirements and the optimal installation conditions of these devices for small sections galleries which are very frequent in the Spanish coal mines.

Full scale tests results have been analyzed to understand the explosion timing and development, in order to assess on the use of water barriers in the typical small crosssection Spanish galleries. Several arrangements of water barriers have been designed
and tested to verify the effectiveness of the explosion suppression in each case. The results obtained demonstrate the efficiency of the water barriers in stopping the flame front even with smaller amounts of water than those established by the European standard. According to the tests realized, water barriers activation times are between
0.52 s and 0.78 s and the flame propagation speed are between 75 m/s and 80 m/s. The maximum pressures (Pmax) obtained in the full scale tests have varied between 0.2 bar and 1.8 bar.

Passive barriers protect effectively against the spread of the flame but cannot be used as a safeguard of the gallery between the ignition source and the first row of water troughs or bags, or even after them, as the pressure could remain high after them even if the
flame front has been extinguished.

Keywords: Real scale tests, Passive water barriers, Spanish coal mines, gas and coal dust explosion.

PAPER 2011/s03.118: FULL SCALE TEST FOR EXPLOSION WATER BARRIERS IN SMALL CROSS-SECTION GALLERIES

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