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Key outcomes:

  • Stockpile emission wind direction dependence assessed
  • Control measure effectiveness quantified and optimised

Many industries use stockpiles to store large quantities of material. Airborne dust emissions can pose significant health and environmental hazards, depending on the material being stored in a stockpile. Particulate matter such as crystalline silica, asbestos, arsenic, or contaminated soil may be present, exacerbating the issue. To mitigate this problem, a windbreak can be implemented to shield stockpiles from the wind, thereby reducing dust emissions.

An image of two stockpiles, and a cut plane showing simulated dust released from them.

Figure 1: Contours of dust released from a pair of stockpiles exposed to an oblique wind. The dust release rate is represented by the colour of the stockpiles, with blue indicating a low rate of dust generation and red indicating a high rate. The generation is highest on the leading edges of the stockpile.

Synergetics have used computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modelling to assess and quantify stockpile emissions and the effect of engineered solutions that significantly reduce emissions for both orthogonal and oblique wind direction. This provides an optimised design for man-made and vegetative wind breaks, and wind fences.

See more examples of our CFD modelling in the mining industry here.