Héroux-Devtek streamlines capture of aerospace combustible dust

Published on May 7th, 2014 by Jim Maclaren

Héroux-Devtek streamlines capture of aerospace combustible dust

Héroux-Devtek is a Tier 1 manufacturer of aerospace components with facilities in Montreal, Toronto, and Kitchener in Canada, and Cleveland and Springfield, Ohio in the US. The Landing Gear Division asked us to review their titanium and magnesium deburring workstations and advise on how to reduce any risk of explosion or fire.

Combustible Dust common in Aerospace Manufacturing

The challenge at hand was to safely capture the combustible dust emitted during component finishing in a facility that was extremely limited in terms of space. The small footprint required excluded the use of typical wet dust collection equipment. Héroux-Devtek had been using several small dry downdraft tables, so there was a concern about the possibility of a filter cartridge fire.

Preventing accumulation of hazardous dust

Héroux-Devtek’s application clearly called for a customized Monsoon Wet Downdraft Table, so our engineers set out to learn more about how the operators would beinteracting with the equipment. Their first priority was operator health and safety. The Monsoon’s wet filtration system immediately helps mitigate the risk of explosion or fire from combustible dust. We added an auto wash-down spray kit that actively rinses surfaces of the table that tend to accumulate dust, and included custom gauges on the inlet/outlet to alert the operator when the filter needs to be serviced.

Minimizing movement for lean manufacturing

Héroux-Devtek’s second priority was ease of use. We custom-installed a thermal motion sensor that immediately switches on the machine when it detects an operator approaching the workstation. When the operator leaves the station, an automatic time delay runs the machine for 30 seconds longer, so that all hazardous dust can be sequestered. We also installed a high-power, dust proof, vapor-proof, LED light kit for improved workstation visibility.

Custom Tool Racks

We learned that the client had installed improvised tool racks on their old downdraft tables. For ease of access, we custom-installed an air tools shelf, complete with compressed air distribution; and we also installed an inline filter regulator lubricator. To accommodate both left-handed and right-handed operators, we installed the tool rack on both sides of the table.

Easy retooling with swivel castors

The Monsoon Wet Downdraft Table is fitted with high-strength, industrial swivel castors as standard, allowing the unit to be re-positioned with ease. To maintain the machine’s mobility with all Héroux-Devtek’s customizations, we engineered the control panel with a transformer to run everything on a single input power plug.

Easy-to-service Wet Downdraft Tables

The duct muffler silencer was fitted with a custom butterfly damper, which allows the machine to either recirculate clean air into the facility or be connected to a central collection system.

Héroux-Devtek’s third priority was ease of service. The fact that the Monsoon’s water tree can removed and cleaned without the need for any tools provided a significant advantage.

Diversitech’s versatile Monsoon downdraft table platform is compact and self-contained while also allowing for many customizations to suit various aerospace combustible dust applications. Whether you have aluminum, titanium or magnesium dust to collect, Diversitech’s Monsoon series provides an affordable wet dust collection solution, which complies with the latest OSHA and NFPA standards.

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They trust us

« As a repeat customer, and owner of both wet and dry downdraft tables, we cannot say enough about the products, and the people at Diversitech…….both are a pleasure to work with! »

  • Combustible dust from deburring safely contained with wet downdraft tables
  • Solved excess dust from grinding and finishing steel parts
  • Reduced cycle time by allowing operators to deburr near the machining center

« The tables are now fully functioning! The students were on them yesterday, and the instructors were so impressed. One instructor even said that he’s “old school” and wasn’t sure about the downdrafts, but he was very impressed. »

  • Custom powder coated tables to match "Baton Rouge Red"
  • Delivered tables "on-time" to five separate campus locations
  • Nanofiber filter technolgy ensure students have a clean and safe learning environment

« We love the downdraft table and are using it full time. We will probably be looking for another one in 6 months to a year as well. Thanks for a nice product. »

  • Mini DD eliminates deburring dust at source
  • Supplied cushion grid matting to protect parts from damage
  • Downdraft table filters airborne dust to protect workers and machinery

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