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Some Phases of the Coal-Dust Question1

Nature volume 88, pages 568570 (22 February 1912) | Download Citation



UP to the year 1875 all great colliery explosions in this country were attributed to the accidental ignition of a large volume of firedamp that had either previously existed in an abandoned empty space, or goaf (like that which admittedly caused the Whitehaven explosion in May 1910), or was supposed to have burst suddenly into the workings and filled them with inflammable gas. In the absence of a goaf, and when, for some reason or other, the occurrence of an “outburst of gas “was not assumed, the cause of the explosion was described as a mystery.


  1. 1.

    Abridged from the Presidential Address delivered to the South Wales Institute of Engineers on January 18 bv Prof. W. Galloway.

  2. 2.

    Published verbatim in the South Wales Daily News of December 22, and Western Mail of December 23, 1875.

  3. 3.

    Le Grisou et ses Accidents, Extrait de la Revue Gnrale des Sciences pures et appliques. No. 20, du 30 Octobre, 1890, p. 19.

  4. 4.

    Hauptbericht der Preussischen Schlagwetter Commission, p. 221 (1887.)

  5. 5.

    Die Entwickelung des Niederrheinisch-Westf lischen Steinkohlen-Bergbaues, vol. ii., p. 6 (1904).

  6. 6.

    Cinquime Srie d'Essais sur les Inflammaions de Poussires, Aot, 1911, p. 68.

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