Preventing Combustible Explosions

What happens to you in an explosion?

First your ears blow out, at about 3.4 PSI, then your eyes…then your lungs and other organs rupture at around 40 PSI.


This is a graphic explanation of exactly what happens in a firey explosion, yet very real. As seen on the image to the right, 4 workers died, and 42 more injured, as a result of explosions, with combustible dust being the culprit.  

You might be thinking, “well I’ve seen gas explosions blow whole neighborhoods up- wood dust could never produce that strong of an explosion”. According to the Journal of Mechanical Science and Technology…

unlike gas explosions having maximum explosion pressure at near chemical stoichiometric concentration, both the maximum explosion pressure and the maximum rate of explosion pressure of wood dusts appeared at three times or much higher equivalence ratio.

Journal of Mechanical Science and Technology

Combustible Wood Dust Explosions

Fires can ignite explosions in dirty workplaces. EXPLOSIONS!

This video explains why settled dust is such a hazard in sawmills and wood shops, and also shows how it increases the risk of fires and explosions, which can cause catastrophic injuries, loss of life, and destruction of buildings.


Factories are meant to be places of productivity where everyone works toward a common goal – whether it’s the number of widgets produced, the number of products assembled and packaged…whatever.  Workplaces should not be explosive traps in which we might lose our lives. It’s one thing if our place of work catches fire or worse, blows up and no one gets hurt…we may lose our livelihoods. But, if we work in a dirty and dangerous workplace…we and our buddies on either side of us can feasibly not be going home tonight.

How to Reduce Fires and Explosions in Factories

Today, technology exists that greatly lessen the threat of fire and explosions in the factories we work in. It’s well worth taking the time to look at some of the ways today’s technologies may keep you out of the nightly news. Spark detection systems, backdraft valves, fire suppression of all sorts play pertinent roles in keeping our factories safer.

Does your workplace have what is required? Intelligent controllers have also proven to make the workplace cleaner, quieter and safer by controlling the airflow and exhausting all particulates when and where they are produced – this eliminates any settling in your main duct, greatly reduces in-factory dust accumulation and when programmed correctly work in orchestra with all of your fire suppression elements.

Dust Collector Causes Fire


PSA: Stay out of the news…

Need Help?

If you would like to learn more about if you and your workplace are in compliance you may reach me at for your free system analysis.

Ecogate at Fabtech November 2019, Chicago

This November 11-14, Ecogate will be demonstrating our intelligent on-demand controls at the Fabtech trade show in Chicago – North America’s Largest Metal Forming, Fabricating, Welding and Finishing Expo.

Visit Ecogate’s Booth

Ecogate President and Engineer-in-Chief Ales Litomisky demonstrates how the Ecogate system can achieve consistent 65% reduction in electricity usage

Stop by if you have EVER WONDERED …

…how much electricity your dust collection system uses each day?
…what fraction of shift time your workstations are actually running?
…how your electricity use changes over the course of a single day?

With Ecogate you can wonder no more.

Ecogate’s web-based analytics platform gives you detailed information about your systems from any web-connected device.

There’s also a Show Special!

If you stop by and connect with us, we have something special in store for you. Ask about our Show Special! (yes, it’s free).

What to Expect

IWF 2018

Short clip of a previous trade show… with nice music!

How to Connect With Us

You’ll be able to find us at booth B23107 in McCormick Place. Look for the greenest booth with the friendliest staff!

Free Tickets

If you plan to be there and would like a complimentary pass for the show, please get in touch – we’ll be happy to get you one.

More About Fabtech

Car Manufacturer Plans Point To a Greener Future

In a 2017 survey by the EPA, Industry and Transportation accounted for 51% of greenhouse gas emissions. Details on the plans by some Automakers to curtail this suggest a greener future for us all.

Smog-forming emissions trend

What are some automakers doing towards renewable energy?

Toyota announced plans to reduce emissions from its U.S. operations by 40 percent over the next three years as part of its plan to operate emissions-free by 2050.

General Motors has announced plans to use 100 percent renewable electricity in its operations by 2050, and has a program to require its suppliers to do the same.

Volkswagen has its own plans to move to renewable energy and now also requires its suppliers to cut carbon emissions.

Reducing factory emissions

As automakers focus on emissions from their cars, more and more they’re also looking into the emissions from their factories and other operations to help reduce the life-cycle emissions from their cars. Running factories on renewable energy can help off-set some of the additional energy required to build large batteries for electric cars.

Green Car Reports

Like these car manufacturers, Ecogate helps your company reduce its overall emissions by significantly reducing the amount of electricity you use on your shop floor.

Read the full article