Combustible Dust Testing

Laboratory testing to quantify dust explosion and reactivity hazards

Safety Data Sheets

Develop critical safety data for inclusion in SDS documents

Gas and Vapor

Laboratory testing to quantify explosion hazards for vapor and gas mixtures

Classification of hazardous materials subject to shipping and storage regulations
Testing and consulting on the explosion risks associated with devices and processes which use or produce hydrogen
Safety Data Sheets

Develop critical safety data for inclusion in SDS documents

Thermal Stability

Safe storage or processing requires an understanding of the possible hazards associated with sensitivity to variations in temperature

Adiabatic Calorimetry
Data demonstrate the consequences of process upsets, such as failed equipment or improper procedures, and guide mitigation strategies including Emergency Relief System (ERS) design
Reaction Calorimetry
Data yield heat and gas removal requirements to control the desired process chemistry
Battery Safety

Testing to support safe design of batteries and electrical power backup facilities particularly to satisfy UL9540a ed.4

Safety Data Sheets

Develop critical safety data for inclusion in SDS documents

Cable Testing
Evaluate electrical cables to demonstrate reliability and identify defects or degradation
Equipment Qualification (EQ)
Testing and analysis to ensure that critical equipment will operate under adverse environmental conditions
Water Hammer
Analysis and testing to identify and prevent unwanted hydraulic pressure transients in process piping
Acoustic Vibration
Identify and eliminate potential sources of unwanted vibration in piping and structural systems
Gas & Air Intrusion
Analysis and testing to identify and prevent intrusion of gas or air in piping systems
ISO/IEC 17025:2017

Fauske & Associates fulfills the requirements of ISO/IEC 17025:2017 in the field of Testing

ISO 9001:2015
Fauske & Associates fulfills the requirements of ISO 9001:2015
Dust Hazards Analysis
Evaluate your process to identify combustible dust hazards and perform dust explosion testing
On-Site Risk Management
On-site safety studies can help identify explosibility and chemical reaction hazards so that appropriate testing, simulations, or calculations are identified to support safe scale up
DIERS Methodology
Design emergency pressure relief systems to mitigate the consequences of unwanted chemical reactivity and account for two-phase flow using the right tools and methods
Deflagrations (Dust/Vapor/Gas)

Properly size pressure relief vents to protect your processes from dust, vapor, and gas explosions

Effluent Handling

Pressure relief sizing is just the first step and it is critical to safely handle the effluent discharge from an overpressure event

FATE™ & Facility Modeling

FATE (Facility Flow, Aerosol, Thermal, and Explosion) is a flexible, fast-running code developed and maintained by Fauske and Associates under an ASME NQA-1 compliant QA program.

Mechanical, Piping, and Electrical
Engineering and testing to support safe plant operations and develop solutions to problems in heat transfer, fluid, flow, and electric power systems
Hydrogen Safety
Testing and consulting on the explosion risks associated with devices and processes which use or produce hydrogen
Thermal Hydraulics
Testing and analysis to ensure that critical equipment will operate under adverse environmental conditions
Nuclear Safety
Our Nuclear Services Group is recognized for comprehensive evaluations to help commercial nuclear power plants operate efficiently and stay compliant
Radioactive Waste
Safety analysis to underpin decomissioning process at facilities which have produced or used radioactive nuclear materials
Adiabatic Safety Calorimeters (ARSST and VSP2)

Low thermal inertial adiabatic calorimeters specially designed to provide directly scalable data that are critical to safe process design

Other Lab Equipment and Parts for the DSC/ARC/ARSST/VSP2 Calorimeters

Products and equipment for the process safety or process development laboratory


Software for emergency relief system design to ensure safe processing of reactive chemicals, including consideration of two-phase flow and runaway chemical reactions


Facility modeling software mechanistically tracks transport of heat, gasses, vapors, and aerosols for safety analysis of multi-room facilities


Our highly experienced team keeps you up-to-date on the latest process safety developments.

Process Safety Newsletter

Stay informed with our quarterly Process Safety Newsletters sharing topical articles and practical advice.


With over 40 years of industry expertise, we have a wealth of process safety knowledge to share.

Recent Posts

Combustible Nano-Dust: Smaller Particle Sizes Lead to Faster, Stronger Explosions

Posted by Fauske & Associates on 07.30.18

By: Timothy Cullina, Senior Consulting Engineer, Fauske & Associates, LLC

Nano Particle - nanoimagingservicesCredit for launching the nanotechnology revolution frequently goes to Richard Feynman’s 1959 talk to the American Physical Society, “There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom”. And even if you disagree with this credit, I hope you can agree that Feynman’s enthusiasm for “small science” certainly fed the imaginations of scientists, philosophers, and deep thinkers about a future built upon nanotechnologies.

Others, maybe Eric Drexler, or was it Omni Magazine, forecast a darker future for nanotechnology with predictions of self-replicating nanobots gone rogue, consuming nearly all resources, and leaving only a dark, dead, world composed of nothing but useless nanobots forming endless piles of “grey goo”.

More than a half century later, the nano engines of creation are quietly humming away, the alarms over grey goo have gone nearly silent, and many of today’s industries move steadily toward producing smaller particulate, even if most are still quite a ways from true nanometer particle size.

Particle size is the dominant physical parameter that affects explosion severity and ease of ignition for combustible dusts. And particulate size is trending down in many industries. This is true for pigment, toners, electronics, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, specialty chemicals, additive manufacturing, food and many more. As with toner, the reason may be improved quality and new transfer technologies. Other advantages may be related to improving mixing efficiencies and reducing production times.

Of course, some particle size reductions may go unnoticed if your management of change (MOC) program is blind to particle size considerations. While there are advantages to working with a smaller particle size that is specific to each application, there is also an increased combustible dust risk associated with smaller particle sizes that needs to be managed.

For example, 10 years ago printer toner particulate sizes averaged 30 to 50 microns. To improve the appearance of type, manufacturers have worked to produce finer and finer toner particulate. Today, toner manufacturers are pushing the size boundaries to, and even below, 10 microns. Ten years ago, KSt values for many toners were in the Class II range, that is 200 to 300 bar-meter per second. Today’s smaller toner particulates have KSt values well over 300 bar-m/s. In some cases the protection strategies employed 10 years ago are no longer adequate. Explosion vent sizes may be too small or suppression reaction times too slow.

The decrease in particle size reduces the required energy to initiate a deflagration. It is easier to meet the conditions necessary for a deflagration or explosion by decreasing the minimum explosible concentration (MEC) decreasing the minimum ignition energy (MIE) needed to ignite the material, and decreasing the temperature at which the material may autoignite (AIT). A smaller particulate also creates a faster and stronger explosion since this greatly increases the maximum rate of pressure rise (dP/dt)max. It may also result in a more powerful pressure wave. All of which makes the material more hazardous.

Particle size may also “unexpectedly” or inadvertently be decreased by process changes or improvements, some even as inconspicuous as replacing mill components or suppliers. For these reasons it is important to understand the impact that smaller sizes will have on your material. A summary of the recommended testing campaign and the effects of particle size on the results are provided in Table 1.

 Table 1 – Recommended Tests for Material Hazard Characterization

Table 1 – Recommended Tests for Material Hazard Characterization


For more information regarding hazardous or combustible dust, dust management services or other process safety concerns, please contact 630-323-8750. 

Combustible Dust Case Study

Topics: Combustible Dust


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