How Sherritt Gordon Receives and Handles Phosphate Rock
Phosphate rock is shipped by boat from Florida to Vancouver, B.C., where it is unloaded and stored in a 50,000-ton silo. It is shipped from Vancouver in 100-ton hopper cars in 80-car trains to Fort Saskatchewan. Both the ship and the hopper cars are on a back-haul with potash. The rock cars are unloaded at Fort Saskatchewan at a rate of approximately 4 cars per hour. The rock is stored in three concrete silos, 40 ft in diameter by 110 ft high, which hold 18,000 tons of recoverable rock with 2,000 tons dead space. The rock is reclaimed from the silos by gravity and fed to the phosphoric acid plant by remotely operated conveying equipment. Problems encountered in the operation include scheduling the rock shipments, contamination of the rock with potash, and handling the 80-car trains both in Vancouver and Fort Saskatchewan.
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