Combustible Metal Dusts: A Particular Class | The Powder Show 2020

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Combustible Metal Dusts: A Particular Class

Jef Snoeys, PhD  (Director, Chief Scientist, Fike Corporation)

Location: Booth 3441

Date: Tuesday, April 28

Time: 11:00am - 11:45am

Track: Center Stage

Vault Recording: TBD

Metal powders are being used more frequently by industries, including transportation, electronics, and in emerging fields such as 3D printing. Consequently, metal dust explosions are on the rise. Attend this session for an extensive overview of metal dust explosions observed in industry, with causes and trends to help you understand this hazard and the techniques and technologies necessary to mitigate it in your process. The session will also feature experimental data Topics will include:

  • Where industry must update standards and guidelines, and develop new safety practices for handling metal combustible dusts, based upon experimental data
  • Guidelines for the safe design and operation of industrial plants handling metal dusts (e.g. NFPA 484: Standard for Combustible Metals (2015)), and where additional research and considerations may be required
  • Why commonly accepted dust explosion test methods and scaling laws do not seem to apply to metals


An extensive overview of metal dust explosions in the industry with causes and trends will be presented. Explanations will be given why metal dust explosions are so dangerous and devastating. New experimental findings, inconvenient and controversial, will be presented. Suggestions to update industry standards and guidelines will be presented and discussed.

Intended Audience

Safety practitioners, first responders, incident investigators, combustion lab technicians and managers, safety consultants, fire marshalls, explosion prevention and mitigation system providers, QHSE and HSE managers and staff