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Abstract

Waterproof lime dust used in coal mines is an important element in the system of protection against explosions. This is one of the oldest methods used to prevent coal dust explosions and, according to an expert’s opinion, it will remain so for a long time. T he work is a summary of research on the development of a new method of producing waterproof limestone dust to use it as an anti-explosive powder in coal mines. The typical method of hydrophobic dust production (milling limestone with stearic acid) is no longer profitable due to the restructuring of the mining industry. The main research was conducted on raw materials traditionally used during the production of anti-explosion powder, namely limestone meal with a grain size diameter equal to 80 μm (Czatkowice Limestone Quarry) and stearic acid as a modifier. Silicone preparation and bituminous preparation (Bitumenovoranstrich) were used as additional modifiers. The hydrophobization process was conducted with the use of different techniques: from stearic acid ether solution, from stearic acid vapor, from methyl silicone resin or bituminous preparation solutions. A series of research on modified powders to determine hydrophobization and flow properties was conducted. Depending on method of hydrophobization, the test of “floating on water”, the extraction of stearic acid was carried out, water contact angles on compacted material were determined, the thermal decomposition of powder was made. The increase in moisture after wet storage was indicated. The flow properties of powders were measured with the use of the Powder Characteristics Tester. The evaluation of the suitability of each hydrophobization methods in achieving the intended purpose was valued.
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