Here are the benefits of pneumatic conveying regarding operator and environmental health and safety:
Improved Environmental Conditions
Regardless of your process being batch or continuous, the creation of a closed system is the surest way to keep your facility, employees, and product safe. By definition (with respect to chemistry), a closed system is a system in which no reactants or product can escape. Maintaining a dust-free environment is critical in many industries such as fine chemical, pharmaceutical, and food and beverage, which focus not only on keeping the personnel safe but keeping the product out of contact from external contamination.
For these reasons, pneumatic conveying is quite friendly when it comes to upholding a good housekeeping regime. Maintenance personnel and operators can appreciate a significant decrease in dust and powder spills. With the elimination of these unwanted exterior contaminants, there is no need to use expensive personal protective equipment (PPE). Your system will appreciate the improved cleanliness as well since the reduction of external corrosion can potentially extend the life of your equipment.
Pneumatically transferring powder improves the overall well-being of the operator. It eliminates the risk of operator back injury caused by lifting heavy powder containers to manually dump powder. Subsequently, this technology also reduces the number of lost work days and absenteeism that are associated with injuries. There is also no risk of employee exposure to hazardous chemicals such as nitrogen and solvent vapors thanks to the closed system that is maintained during the process. And since powder charging can be done from a distance, operators don’t need to get close to the reactor while it is running, further increasing safety.
Ability to Charge Powders Safely
Some pneumatic conveying systems provide the ability to charge powders without disrupting the process (i.e. without opening a manway) allowing you to not only save time but also to charge with the vessel under pressure or vacuum, as well as with solvents already in the vessel – and all while retaining an inert atmosphere. Transferring in this way also reduces static generation for considerable reduction in the risk of explosion. Although many applications involve nontoxic, non-explosive powders, pneumatic transfer enables the conveying of carcinogens, oxygen or skin sensitive and explosive powders safely.