Dust Measurement and Control in Thick Seam Mining


The increasing scale of thick seam longwall mining operations presents particular dust control challenges above those faced by those at more traditional extraction heights of 1.8 to 3.0m. These include major face slabbing of coal, the leaving of substantial coal in the roof, high average production rates and peak tonnages and high air velocities required to dilute seam gases and because face length are increased. A questionnaire survey of six Australian thick seam miners operators to identify individual mine issues related to dust control is discussed. Thick seam longwall dust issues based on the analysis of dust survey results from both published US data and from Joint Coal Board data are presented. Recommendations have been given for research and innovation in area of airflow and dilution, research into various spray installations, applications of Computational Fluid Dynamics, some engineering approaches and questions of management of dust issues within the mine operating structure. Australia's approach to mining in thick seams is unique. Improvements to the mine atmosphere and dust conditions will be driven through effort undertaken within the country with application where appropriate of overseas developments.


Mining Engineering


Australian Coal Association Research Program

Keywords and Phrases

Dust Control; Thick Seam Longwall Mining

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2002 Taylor & Francis, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jun 2002