Submitted to: International Conference on Air Pollution from Agricultural Operations
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 15, 2000
Publication Date: October 11, 2000
Citation: Funk, P.A., Holt, G.A. Summary of Cyclone Research at Two USDA-ARS Ginning Laboratories. Proceedings Second International Conference on Air Pollution from Agricultural Operations. 2000. p. 271-277. Interpretive Summary: Dust cyclones are a proven and cost effective means for removing particulates from air that has been used to transport material in a cotton gin. Similar agricultural industries such as feed mills and nut processing plants also use dust cyclones to treat conveying air. Cyclone technology was widely adopted in the 1950's. Recent regulatory agency changes in allowable emissions from agricultural industrial sources have made earlier cyclone designs inadequate for compliance with current air quality standards. The USDA laboratories in Mesilla Park, NM and Lubbock, TX have conducted research to enable cotton gins to comply with National Ambient Air Quality Standards and related legislation. Research has focused both on actual cyclone design configurations such as entrance shape and on operating parameters such as air speed. This paper summarizes recent findings and discusses unpublished and planned research. Because of the efforts of the USDA laborabories and partners in academia, dust cyclone emissions have fallen to two thirds of what they were under identical conditions a decade ago. Furthermore, the energy required to operate a cyclone (which causes pollution when it is generated) has also been reduced. Cotton gins can continue to use inexpensive low maintenance dust cyclones to comply with increasingly stringent air quality regulations.
Technical Abstract: Cyclones have been used for decades as a cost effective means of controlling particulate matter emissions from cotton gins. Due to more stringent regulatory laws, mandates and the public's heightened awareness of environmental concerns, there has become a need for greater control of emissions from cotton gins. Within the past few years, a significant amount of research has been performed to enhance and improve cyclone performance in an effort to help the ginning industry anticipate and stay abreast of more restrictive emission standards. The studies included evaluation of operational and design parameters as well as numerous modifications and improvements to the conventional cyclone collector. A summary of the cyclone work performed and the results obtained at the USDA - ARS ginning laboratories in Lubbock, TX and Mesilla Park, NM are included in this paper as well as current and future work plans.