Evaluation of a Catalyzed Ceramic Diesel Particulate Filter and Catalytic Converter on an Underground Mine Vehicle


The U.S. Bureau of Mines (USBM) and Diesel ControlsLimited are evaluating a new diesel emission control system on an underground mine vehicle. The system is a catalyzed ceramic wall-flow diesel particulate filter (CDPF) combined with an oxidation catalytic converter (OCC). It is the first installation in the U.S. of a CDPF on a mining vehicle with a turbocharged engine at a high altitude mine, and the first installation of both a CDPF and an OCC on a mine vehicle. This paper describes the design and installation of the system on the load-haul-dump (LHD) vehicle. The results of screening tests conducted by the USBM are also given. The screening tests were conducted to determine if the device’s ~~articulactoel lection efficiency ,regeneration temperature, and cfl’cct on gaseous hydrocarbon @C) and carbon monoxide (CO) emissions changed over the period it was being used. ‘I’he system was removed from the LHD and evaluated in the laboratory after operating for 308 and 1200 hours. After 308 hours of operation, laboratory testing revealed its particulate collection efficiency varied from 41.0 to 93.5 percent, depending on engine operating conditions. Its regeneration temperature was about 415’ C. It reduced HC emissions by up to 97.6 percent, and CO by up to 95.0 percent. When tested in the laboratory after operating for 1200 hours on the vehicle, no significant change in performance was observed.




Diesel-powered mining equipment offers a number of advantages over other types of materials handling equipment. Its mobility, versatility, and ruggedness make it adaptable to many different mining methods. Since the development of the articulated body, 4-wheel-drive load-haul-dump (LHD) in 1962, the use of diesel equipment has become widespread in underground mines.  In 1988, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health recommended that whole diesel exhaust be regarded as a “potential occupational carcinogen” (I).* The Mine Safetyand Health Administration (MSHA), the regulatory agency responsible for overseeing mines in the U.S., has proposed new standards for the use of diesel equipment in underground coal mines, and is expected to recommend an exposure limit for diesel particulate matter (DPM) (2) DPM is respirable and is composed of nonvolatile carbon with adsorbed or condensed compounds These include potentially mutagenic or carcinogenic compounds, such as polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons and sulfates.  Typical can concentrations of DPM in mines range from 0 2 to 1 0 mg/m3(3,4) The USBM, in cooperation with mining companies and equipment manufacturers, is investigating a variety of emission controls for reducing miner exposure to DPM.

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