Improving Material Flow in Plug-Flow Type Fine Ore Bins - Case Studies

Feeding bulk solids from bins or bunkers poses a problem to the mill operator if material size, consistency and moisture content change from the original characteristics on which the bin design was based. This case study describes a situation in which increased mill output was obtained by going to finer crushing, thus causing material flow problems such as rat-holing in the fine ore bin when the moisture content increased to approximately 3 per cent. Improvements to the erratic flow in the bin were achieved by minor changes to the structure which involved creating larger feed openings and installing new feeders, but maintaining the existing conveying system. The example illustrated is based on an actual project carried out for a gold-copper producer. Maintenance costs with the new system are also indicated.
Keywords: angle of repose, chief mechanical engineer, mechanical engineering, Mexican, ore dressing, Feeders, Fines, flow, Installation, Material flow, Materials, Ore, Ores, Systems
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