3 Issues to Consider When Designing a Dust Collection System for Fabrication Shops

Health and safety concerns require fabricators to install a dust collection system so that the fine dust particles that are generated during CNC laser cutting processes can be taken away before they contaminate the air within the fabrication shop. This article discusses some of the considerations that you should discuss with the designer of your dust collection system.

Fabrication Automation

You should pay attention to the magnitude of automation at your fabrication shop during the design of a dust collection system. This is because automation places a heavier demand on dust collection systems because the fabrication equipment, such as CNC laser cutters, is constantly working. That nonstop work does not allow the dust collector to work at a slower pace as would be possible if some operations weren't automated. For instance, a slow dust collection system can mop up excess dust during the downtime when employees are removing a work piece in order to replace it with another on the laser cutter. Thus, semi-automation of processes imposes a lower demand on dust collection systems than full automation does.

Heat Load

Different fabrication processes generate different amounts of heat. For instance, a fabrication shop that has an oxyfuel cutter in addition to a laser cutter will generate hotter dust due to the heat of the oxyfuel cutter. The dust collection system should have components that can withstand the heat generated during the cutting processes. Alternatively, the system can be designed to have cooler air channeled through it so that the hot dust is cooled to acceptable levels that the collection system can tolerate.

Dust Load

The dust load refers to the volume of dust that is generated by the laser cutter during its operation. Higher dust loads require more efficient dust collection systems than lower dust loads do. Secondly, the particle size of the dust also affects dust collection systems. For instance, smaller particles require a greater suction force so that they don't cake on the surface of the filters within the collection system. A system must therefore be created to blow an appropriate amount of air over the work piece so that all the dust can be sucked through the filters.

As you can see, a dust collection system for laser cutting equipment must be customised for each fabrication shop. You should therefore avoid ordering a collection system that you saw somewhere without considering whether the operating conditions at that shop are identical to the operating conditions in your fabrication shop. Seek for expert help during the shopping process for a dust collection system for your CNC laser cutters.