A Fundamental Approach to Belt Feeder Loads

Belt Feeder Design

A Fundamental Approach to Belt Feeder Loads

How to assess loads on Feeders, (practically)
Feeders are widely used for metering bulk solids and discharging the contents of hoppers and silos. Numerous attempts have been made to describe the process of feeding but quite often they only cover certain products and hopper construction. In this article the reader will find a more general approach to this field of problems.
(ed. WoMaMarcel - 01/9/2015)
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A second practical point is that the development of the shear plane between the gravity flow of the hopper contents and the translationary motion of material on the feeder belt is highly sensitive to the exit geometry from the hopper. For example, Fig. 2 showing a specific arrangement illustrates an increasing taper connection from a ‘V’ shaped hopper, which would usefully generate an expansion of the shear plane, but then restrains the outlet by a profiled cut-out that prevents this shear plane continuing though the end outlet. It also permits the highest rate of extraction to be taken from the centre of the bin, which optimises the conveying profile on the belt but aggravates flow velocity contours developed in the bin and forces the development of a profiled shear plane below the favourable transition in the hopper construction.

Fig. 2: Belt feeder with restricted outlet profile.

Fig. 3 similarly shows a gate restricting the shear plane to a level below the inclined transition of the hopper walls, although this does allow an even depth of bed to be extracted from the hopper. By contrast, the outlet in Fig. 4 implies extraction by a bed of uniform depth, but the only concession to incremental extraction is the additional material escaping from the hopper side by repose flow.

Fig. 3: Belt feeder with restricted outlet profile.

Fig. 4: Belt feeder with parallel outlet.

Detail design matters hugely and is not a task for amateurs. Many project engineers consider detail design is the responsibility of draughtsmen, who pay close attention to engineering aspects but are not specialists in powder technology

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