4 Common Types of Dust Collectors

In manufacturing plants, facilities, and other industrial operations, varying types of dust collectors are employed to collect, capture, and separate dust and particles generated in those environments from the air. Dust collectors are also designed to filter harmful gases and particulate matter that can pose a health hazard to employees.

4 Most Common Types of Dust Collectors

The most common types of dust collectors used in industrial environments are:

  • Pulse jet dust collectors
  • Shaker dust collectors
  • Cartridge dust collectors
  • Cyclone dust collectors

The former three are among a number of effective fabric filtration system designs, whereas the latter is used in conjunction with the pulse, shaker, and cartridge systems as a pre-cleaning measure. All are a class of air pollution control devices found in industrial or commercial environments that are designed to meet EPA and workplace air quality safety requirements. Reverse air dust collectors and electrostatic precipitators are also used in industry but are outside of the scope of this article.

Pulse Jet and Shaker Baghouse Systems

The most widely used dust collector is an industrial-scale fabric filtration system commonly referred to as a baghouse. Two popular baghouse system designs are the pulse jet dust collector and the shaker dust collector. The bags are housed in large skeletal frames or housings that draw dust, particulates, and gases through an intake that directs the airstream to the baghouse compartment. In each, dust and gases, and emissions are captured in or on bag filters. As dust cakes form on the surface, sensors alert system operators to clean the accumulation before it renders the air pressure insufficient. This is where the pulse jet system and shaker systems differ in design.

Pulse Jet Dust Collectors

A pulse jet dust collector, also referred to as a pulse jet bag filter or pulse jet baghouse, is a dry fabric filtration system designed to remove the collected particulate matter and dust from the surface of the filter media with bursts of compressed air. The system provides excellent filtration efficiency and can eliminate potentially harmful particulate matter and gas fumes from entering work environments or from being released into the atmosphere. Pulse cleaning is usually performed “online” so the process can operate continually even with a single module.

The name of the pulse jet baghouse derives from the short bursts or “pulses” of compressed air used to clean the bag or filter. The compressed air maximizes system efficiency at a minimal operational cost. Dust collects on the outside of the bag filter where it forms into a cake of dust. A Sensor activates pulses of compressed air to strike the bag when an appropriate thickness of dust collects. The pulse creates a shock wave effect on the outside of the filter bags to free the dust cakes off the fabric and into a collector at the base of the hopper.

Shaker Dust Collectors

Where compressed air is not available or impractical, shake-cleaning baghouse systems, or simply, shaker dust collectors are an excellent alternative. Shaker fabric filtration uses a shaker cleaning system to release the collected dust particles from filter media surfaces by mechanically shaking the filter bags. The shaking can be achieved manually or by using a motor connected to a rack supporting the filter bags. The system can clean off-line when the airflow is temporarily halted or it can be cleaned in sections one compartment at a time. The compartmented feature provides continuous cleaning and simultaneously allows individual compartments to be taken offline for servicing.

Cartridge Collectors

Cartridge collectors are another type of fabric filter designed for specific configurations and applications. They are ideally suited for placement in smaller spaces that have the same airflow of a larger baghouse system. Cartridge collectors are cost-effective systems that present minimal safety hazards. As more fabric area is packed into smaller spaces, cartridge collectors utilize fewer filters and, because filters are changed from the outside, filters can be changed quickly with fewer safety risks. Where extremely high particulate removal efficiencies are required, cartridge collectors can also be fitted with HEPA filters to provide maximum air cleaning. HEPA filters trap 99.97% of airborne particulates down to 0.3 microns in size. CPEF also provides HEPA filtration on Pulse-Jet Systems. We routinely put HEPA filters on pulse-jet baghouses, also.

Cyclone Dust Collectors

Cyclone dust collectors are a type of mechanical inertial separator that removes dust from a gas stream through centrifugal or cyclonic force within a hopper chamber. As the name suggests, cyclone dust collectors create an intense circular airflow, a vortex in effect, to separate particles from the air. Heavier particles are pushed against the outer wall of the hopper and fall into a collection chamber at the bottom. Because they remove heavier particles from the airstream, cyclone systems are often employed as a pre-cleaner for larger baghouse filtration systems. They are engineered and designed in a wide range of configurations relevant to the filtration requirements of the industry. Sizes range from massive multi-cyclone outdoor collectors affixed to buildings to mobile cyclone dust collectors designed for use in labs.

To learn more about the types of dust collectors available and the system that would best suit your needs, please contact us at CPE Filters today!