FLSmidth’s new belt conveyor is especially designed for safer operating procedures as well as ease of installation and maintenance
FLSmidth has released a new improved version of its inplant belt conveyor.
Building on the proven design principles of the current belt conveyor, which has successfully served cement markets around the world for many years, the new version offers low cost, improved reliability and has been designed to create safer working conditions.
The main improvements in the new conveyor involve the exterior casing, while the successful transportation system design of the previous version has been retained. Mads Mikkelsen, Global Chief Engineer at FLSmidth, who has overseen development of the new inplant belt conveyor, says it is based on the knowledge gained from many years in working with belt conveyors:
“Our intention was to create a well thought-through solution, based on our experience and customer’s real needs. We made sure to get input from people who work with belt conveyors onsite. This includes other specialists within FLSmidth, such as operation and maintenance specialists. This was important, because they have extensive real-world experience
of working with the belt conveyors, and know about the issues that can arise.” - Mads Mikkelsen, Global Chief Engineer at FLSmidth
Safer working practices
A key objective when designing the inplant belt conveyor was avoiding accidents of any kind. This means that all parts involved in the maintenance work – while the belt is still moving – have been moved outside the safety guards. This includes a completely new and innovative system for idler frames, which allows operators to adjust idler frames for belt tracking from outside of the cover with just a wrench and hammer.
The cover also contains three small holes that allow the operator to see inside the cover without opening to ensure proper belt tracking. In addition, the idler frame and cover frame are fully integrated as one unit saving weight and reducing the number of parts. Patents have been filed for both of these features. Another example is the lubrication points, which have all been placed outside the safety guard.
Even a new feature named ‘dynamic rock box’ – an adjustable rock box – can be adjusted from outside the safety guard. This new rock box can ensure the material lands in the centre of the belt and will greatly reduce dust emissions in the inlet.
Unique but simple cover
A unique feature of the inplant belt conveyor is the cover. Considerable effort was put into creating an equally strong, more flexible and lighter cover to replace the previous corrugated iron design. The new cover is easier to open and handle, as the individual covers do not overlap. It slides open in a breadbox-like way.
Designed for easy mounting
It is quick to assemble onsite, partly because it contains fewer parts – up to 70 percent fewer than the existing design – and because it is preassembled in the workshop. Everything that could be welded in advance is welded. For example, most nuts are welded to the construction. This benefits everything ranging from logistics to installation and maintenance. Another example of simplification is that the number of different bolt sizes have been reduced, which helps reduce installation time significantly.
Input received from plants around the world has also had a major influence on the discharge section, most importantly, access to it. Operators can safely gain an overview of actual status during operation and have full access for maintenance when stopped. This is made possible with the addition of two small inspection hatches and a major double working door at the end of the conveyor.
The discharge section also includes hollow shaft gears, which hang on the pulley shaft and are supported directly on the main frame. This means it does not need civil construction and it provides better access around the discharge. At the same time, it provides full access for the primary and secondary scrapers.
Handling of sticky and abrasive materials
Another important feature is the ability to handle sticky and abrasive materials. The new ‘dynamic rock box’ will minimise wear on the inlet box. However, wear plates in the inlet box are still fixed with a very simple system and can easily be changed. For abrasive materials, it can be Hardox and for sticky materials low friction material.
Other special features of the discharge include space for a spillage conveyor and a specially designed baffle plate.