Calibration of the cloud and aerosol spectrometer for coal dust composition and morphology

Teresa Barone, Evelyn Hesse, Clara Seaman, Anthony Baran, T.W. Beck, M.L. Harris, P.A. Jaques, T. Lee, S.E. Mischler

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The cloud and aerosol spectrometer (CAS) was calibrated to enable CAS sizing of coal dust for studies on flammable dust control. Coal dust sizes were determined by light-scattering theories for irregular particles that account for particle composition and morphology in computing coal dust diameters. Coal dust size computations were compared with test dust that was generated by cyclone separation and air-jet sieving and characterized by aerodynamic particle sizer (APS) and computer-controlled scanning electron microscopy (CCSEM) measurements. For test dust in the range of 0.5–32 µm, coal dust size distributions were consistent with cyclone-separated and sieve-segregated sizes. For the 3–20 µm size range, the coal dust size distribution had a mass median diameter that was 14% larger than that of the APS. This difference was reasonable considering that the basic calibration for glass spheres had 13% uncertainty. For the 20–32 µm and 32–45 µm test dusts, mass median diameters differed from CCSEM measurements by only 4% and 5%, respectively. Overall, the results suggest agreement between test dust sizes and computations for coal dust. Alternatively, using conventional Mie theory computations for spheres, coal dust mass median diameters were 35% and 40% larger than APS and CCSEM measurements, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1805-1814
Number of pages10
JournalAdvanced Powder Technology
Issue number9
Early online date4 Jun 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2019


  • Aerodynamic particle sizer
  • Agglomeration
  • Computer-controlled scanning electron microscopy
  • Optical spectrometer
  • Particle size distribution


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