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Dust consists of visible and invisible, floating and fallen particles of solid material. Whether a dust particle lands on the floor or not depends on its type. The smaller the particle, the less it tends to fall. The particle’s weight does not play a role in this. If the particles are very small (such as with metal dusts), the dust stays in the air continuously and does not fall. In assessing dust particles’ toxicity, both the size and the chemical composition play a decisive role.
The OEL (occupational exposure limit) is defined as the maximum concentration of a contaminant in workplace air.
The specific properties of the material are decisive for the type of dust extraction, filtration and transport used. The various dust types differ in grain size, apparent density, moisture content, temperature and other features (such as abrasiveness and hygroscopicity). These factors have crucial influence on the extraction system’s design.