Completed Research

Passive dust monitors

The original work on fugitive dust from opencast coal mining led to the development of a passive sticky pad method of directional dust monitoring. This was validated in subsequent work at Leeds in the mid-2000s supported by The Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 and DustScan Ltd1. Further work was then undertaken with funding from Finance South East to develop our own dust sampling media, which enabled us to launch a depositional dust monitor2.

Geochemical methods and dust mapping

This latter work also involved the development of a new adhesive that permitted the laboratory removal of dust, if appropriate from the specific sectors of the sticky pad from a directional dust monitor. The collected dust could then be weighted and chemically analysed for dust ‘fingerprinting’. Working with Portsmouth University, geochemical methods had previously been developed for assessing concentration ratios for particular chemical elements by dissolving the dust and the sticky pad3. With the ability to remove the dust from the adhesive it was possible to explore a wide range of settings where fugitive dust pollution might occur. Use was made of geostatistical methods to assess the extent and levels of dusting and contamination arising. This has helped in the development of dust mapping4.

1Hugh Datson PhD thesis Leeds University, 2009  |  2Datson, Fowler and Williams, 2011  | 3Fowler, Datson and Newberry, 2010  | 4Fowler, Datson, Williams and Bruce, 2013

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