Blog: Imperial Systems Approach to Dust Collection

The Science of In Line Deflagration Arrestor Safety

Imperial Systems is a leader in the industry for safe, effective dust collector systems and in line deflagration arrestors.

The development of in line deflagration arrestor devices and systems has been instrumental in increased facility employee safety and explosion protection in industrial dust collection systems.  As a leader in the industry and provider of our proprietary DeltaMAXX In-Line Deflagration Arrester Cartridge Filters, Imperial Systems presents this guide to the science behind flame front causes, and how an in line deflagration arrestor can protect your facility.

Whenever a flammable mixture of vapor or gas comes in contact with an ignition source, a flame front will develop. The flame in line deflagration arrestorwill continue to burn through the vapor or gas until:

  1. The flame’s fuel supply is consumed.
  2. The heat sustaining the flame’s combustion is removed.
  3. The system’s oxygen concentration fluctuates either too high or too low to facilitate continued burning.

If a flame front is propagating slower than the speed of sound in the vapor, it is called a deflagration.  A deflagration may develop in the atmosphere (known as an unconfined deflagration) or in an enclosed area, such as a ductwork system (known as a confined deflagration).  A confined deflagration (e.g. – an ignition in a run of pipe) starts at low speed and pressure; as the flame front travels in the pipe, its speed and associated pressure increase. In ductwork with multiple bends, the flame accelerates until it transitions into a stable detonation.

An in line deflagration arrestor is a passive safety device designed to prevent the spread of flame fronts through lines and duct configurations, and between tanks and combustion units. Regardless of types, all in line deflagration arrestors operate on the same principle: This is also known as “flashback”.

All flame arrestors work using the same basic process:

  • Disperse the flame front.
  • Release its energy.
  • Cool flame to below the ignition point of the vapor within the system.

When correctly installed, an in line deflagration arrestor will extinguish flame fronts travelling from either direction. Such devices can be employed in many industries, including metalworking, pulp and paper, mining, power generation, and bulk liquids transportation, among others.  The installation of flame arresters should be considered for activated-carbon absorbers, vacuum pumps, and other equipment that emits flammable vapors and/or can serve as an ignition source.

In order to safeguard workers in the metalworking industry, Imperial Systems tested our CMAXX System numerous times with the IDA DeltaMAXX filters.  In all tests across the board, each filter was able to isolate the flammable dust and completely stop a flame front consistently every time.   

For more information, contact Imperial Systems today at 800.918.3013.