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Assessing mineral dust properties using passive dust samplers and scanning electron microscopy


Noble, TL and Berry, RF and Goemann, K and Lottermoser, B, Assessing mineral dust properties using passive dust samplers and scanning electron microscopy, Environmental Indicators in Metal Mining, Springer, B Lottermoser (ed), Switzerland, pp. 327-342. ISBN 9783319427294 (2016) [Research Book Chapter]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2017 Springer International Publishing Switzerland

DOI: doi:10.1007/978-3-319-42731-7_18


This study presents a novel method to characterize dust particles using a passive dust sampler (PDS). Six different PDS were deployed around six different metal mine sites (Tasmania, Australia) and left in the field for 1 month. Dust particles were analyzed directly on the PDS using a Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope. Backscattered electron (BSE) images were collected with a resolution of 0.5 Ám per pixel and used to characterize the size and composition of dust particles. Those particles >2 Ám in diameter were classified according to the range of BSE brightness values, which correspond to mineralogical compositions. Particles were grouped according to BSE brightness and categorized as organic particles, silicates, Fe silicates and oxides, and sulfides. Dust sources with unique particle size:composition relationships were identified at particular mine site domains (e.g. rock crusher, concentrator plant, tailings dam). The documented method can be used to monitor the dispersal of mineral dust and provide information on the mineralogical composition of particle size fractions relevant to occupational health risks at metalliferous mine sites.

Item Details

Item Type:Research Book Chapter
Keywords:dust monitoring, mine site, mineral dust
Research Division:Environmental Sciences
Research Group:Pollution and contamination
Research Field:Pollution and contamination not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the earth sciences
UTAS Author:Noble, TL (Dr Taryn Noble)
UTAS Author:Berry, RF (Associate Professor Ron Berry)
UTAS Author:Goemann, K (Dr Karsten Goemann)
ID Code:115249
Year Published:2016
Deposited By:CODES ARC
Deposited On:2017-03-10
Last Modified:2018-01-23

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