High Angle Conveying, the Vital (missing) Link to IPCC Systems – 2017

Belt Conveyor Technology

High Angle Conveying, the Vital (missing) Link to IPCC Systems – 2017

Installations and recent studies have demonstrated the technical and economical advantages of high angle conveying for optimization of any IPCC system, yet that industry continues to struggle with the use of conventional solutions to achieve the high angle function.
(ed. WoMaMarcel - 07/4/2017)
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It is worthwhile to highlight some of the installations. DS 001 is the original large scale prototype and demonstration unit. Here we were able to probe the limits of the system. It was easy to purposely run very large material to see the consequence. It was from this testing, and the later running of the commercial units, that we formed our criteria.

Sandwich belt high angle conveyors can and have conveyed very large oversize material from the sandwich entrance to the discharge. At DS 037, a 150 HP TBM cutter motor was unintentionally but successfully conveyed from the loading point to the discharge. There was some very minor damage, but the system continued to operate until a scheduled down time to make the minor repairs. It is not a question of what is the largest material that can be handled. The Dos Santos criteria are to determine the material size that should be handled for reliable trouble free operation with minimal wear and tear.

DS 003 is the HAC at Majdanpek Copper Mine in Serbia, the only IPCC application to date. Table 1 and Fig. 14 show that the 250 mm lumps are easily handled at the 2000 mm wide belts.

Reference [4] documents the Majdanpek IPCC System performance five years after start up. The system:

  • precluded tripling of the truck fleet,
  • precluded the need for 4 km of haulage ramps, 3.5 km of which would be of constant ascent, and
  • saved USD 12 million per year.

Almost an IPCC application, DS 036 elevates coarse (250 mm minus) gold ore from the primary jaw crusher to the next crushing stage. It is at the pit perimeter, not in the pit. Definitely an overreach on the lump size handled, this HAC suffered some wear and tear consequence. However, it continues to run successfully today.

The vital elevating link of a self-unloading ship system, DS 065 handles a variety of materials including 305 mm minus rock. The HAC lifts the material onto a boom conveyor that discharges the bulk cargo to shore. This system is right at the edge of the maximum lump criteria for occasionally lumpy material with less than 10% lumps. Design reflected that fact. The very coarse rock material is one of several commodities transported, and the unloading conveyors don’t operate continuously 24/7, rather there is much non-operating time at sea. This system replaced a massive apron type elevator that suffered very costly wear and tear.

On the last line of Table 1, the UHAC is a prospective application for Western Australia. It is designed as the vital link to salvage an existing IPCC System that has proven sluggish due to its dependency on long low angle conventional conveyors that link the IPCC system to the remote spoiling system. Operation of the present system proved impractical largely due to the extensive planning required, much non-productive movement, excavation, re-handling and grading work required to accommodate the present low angle link. Presently the system sits idle awaiting the vital link that will free the rigid interdependency of the in-pit system and the remote spoiling system.

The UHAC promises salvation, providing a compact mobile link, capable of elevating or lowering the primary crushed 350 mm minus waste rock at 8000 t/h. Designed with the emphasis on versatility the UHAC can operate in either direction (elevating or lowering the material) and at any level from tramming on grade (Fig. 16) to a 3 × 12 m bench operation (Fig. 15). The UHAC offers the vital versatile link for surface spoiling (elevating) or back filling of the mined out pit (lowering).

Fig. 15: UHAC elevating/lowering at a 3-bench operation.

Fig. 16: UHAC elevating/lowering at a 1-bench operation and tramming on grade.

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