Particle Size Distribution in a Godbert-Greenwald Furnace: Experiments and Modelling
Pietraccini, Matteo
Danzi, Enrico
Marmo, Luca
Glaude, Pierre-Alexandre
Dufour, Anthony
Dufaud, Olivier

How to Cite

Pietraccini M., Danzi E., Marmo L., Glaude P.-A., Dufour A., Dufaud O., 2022, Particle Size Distribution in a Godbert-Greenwald Furnace: Experiments and Modelling, Chemical Engineering Transactions, 90, 469-474.


During a dust dispersion, the particle size distribution (PSD) depends on several factors such as the turbulence, the initial particle size and shape as well as the dust concentration. As a consequence, when determining safety parameters using standard procedures, its potential evolution should be considered. Different powders were chosen: glucose, starch, ascorbic acid, glass beads and cellulose. A Godbert-Greenwald furnace was used to disperse the powders and determine their minimum ignition temperature (MIT) according to ISO/IEC 80079-20-2:2016 standard. The PSD of each powder was determined in-situ at different locations using a laser diffraction sensor. Some powders showed clear signs of breakage, as for glucose whose mean diameter decreases from 166 to 76 µm during its dispersion. On the contrary, many samples tended to agglomerate, e.g. starch and cellulose. For instance, the d90 of starch can even be quadrupled under certain conditions. Agglomeration occurs especially for fine dusts due to strong inter-particles forces (e.g. starch) or for elongated fibres due to entanglement phenomenon (e.g. cellulose). During a powder dispersion in the Godbert-Greenwald furnace, the PSD evolves not only as a function of time but also along with its location. The impact of the glass elbow on PSD variation has notably been highlighted by placing the G-G furnace horizontally. For powders showing strong tendency to agglomeration or breakage, the influence of the dispersion pressure has also been studied. The role of such PSD modification on the MIT has been measured and, depending on the dispersion procedure, temperature differences of more than 50°C have been observed. The agglomerate strength was assessed using three models (from Rumpf, Weiler and Kendall works) and compare to the deagglomeration stress exerted on the powders. In the case of cohesive powders, fibres or brittle dusts, attention should be paid to the PSD evolution during MIT determination.