Journal of Loss Prevention in The Process Industries, Vol.40, 502-506, 2016
A novel bipolar electrostatic ionizer for charged polypropylene granules used in a pneumatic powder transport facility
As a method of preventing or mitigating explosion due to electrostatic discharges during the loading of polymer granules in a metal silo, we have developed a novel bipolar electrostatic ionizer. In this study, we investigated experimentally a practical version of the bipolar electrostatic ionizer with a modeling test device to measure the charge-neutralizing current, and a full-sized pneumatic powder transport facility. The electrostatic discharges generated inside a silo while loading polypropylene (PP) granules were also observed visually with/without the novel bipolar electrostatic ionizer. As a sample, 300 kg of polypropylene granules 2-3 mm in size was used in this study. The specific charge of the polypropylene granules was clearly decreased by approximately 85 percent with the novel bipolar electrostatic ionizer. The brush discharges, as well as the incendiary bulk surface discharges, completely died out inside the silo when the novel bipolar electrostatic ionizer used. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.