Monitoring Dust Emissions from Coal Trains

Two state-of-the-art low-cost KOALA (Knowing Our Ambient, Local Air) monitors were installed at the Cannon Hill Railway Station on the 2nd January 2019. Coal trains regularly pass this station on their way to and from the Port of Brisbane. For more information about the KOALAs and how they operate.

Dust concentrations in the three particle size ranges PM1, PM2.5 and PM10 are measured at five minute intervals and transmitted to our in-cloud database for later analysis.

The PM2.5 concentrations measured by the two KOALAs over a period of two days are shown in the figure below.

The observed spikes are due to dust emissions from the passage of coal trains.

This study is on-going. We intend to estimate the contribution of coal dust to the air near this train line and to assess if the levels are within the national guidelines for clean air.

Our Team

Project Leader:

  • Professor Lidia Morawska, ILAQH, QUT

QUT Investigators:

  • Professor Matthew Dunbabin
  • Rohan Jayaratne
  • Tara Kuhn
  • Bryce Christensen
  • Riki Lamont
  • Isak Zing
  • Xiaoting Liu