Challenge/Solution Case Study: Mitigating Risk for Combustible Dust Deflagration

Nestor Rentas Challenge/Solution Case Studies


EFI Group developed the approach, general arrangements and the mechanical designs necessary for the client to significantly reduce the risk and consequences of a dust deflagration in various sugar processing facilities. EFI Group and the client continue to develop and implement these improvements through multiple dust mitigation projects across the country.


Recent events in industry have highlighted the risks associated with combustible dust explosions. EFI Group has worked with the client at various facilities to help mitigate the risk and the consequences of a dust deflagration. These efforts focus primarily on milling systems, dust collectors and bucket elevators..


EFI Group’s role in these efforts is to support the process and equipment portion of the client’s dust deflagration mitigation program. Often, EFI Group develops the project scope and cost for these efforts and then provides design details necessary to implement improvements.

EFI Group’s efforts have focused on three primary areas:

  1. To recommend, design and help implement changes that minimize the risk of ignition sources developing inside equipment. Typically, this work entails the selection and implementation of vibration sensors, bearing temperature monitors, belt and pulley alignment sensors, magnets and metal detectors.
  2. To determine the best approach to mitigating the impact a dust deflagration has on the facility. This entails evaluating changes in equipment type and determining whether venting or chemical suppression is the best approach for a given vessel.
  3. To design new, or improve existing, dust collection systems in order to prevent the accumulation of dust in areas outside the process equipment.


  • Equipment recommendations and arrangement drawings depicting the modification of existing, or the installation of new, equipment.
  • Process flow and system P&ID drawings.
  • Network diagrams for the control system.
  • Mechanical and electrical scope of work documents.
  • Detailed project cost estimates.
  • Detailed design drawings suitable for a contractor to modify and install the equipment.

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