Challenges of Handling Bulk Materials: Overview
What do farmers, miners, oil drillers, cement manufacturers, and food processors have in common besides really long work days? They have the challenge of moving huge amounts of dry bulk solids from often inaccessable starting points to processing plants and job sites all over the world where they must be processed. In fact, this is a unifying frustration for a great many industries. And while bulk materials vary drastically in texture, moisture content, and size of pieces; the solutions for handling them are surprisingly comparable.
Most people know the role of ships, trains, and trucks in moving dry bulk solids. But if you don't work around this kind of thing you may not understand the equally difficult challenge of handling bulk material to load it into a shipping vessel and then transloading it to another. This can happen several times before the product arrives at its final destination. Manufacturing plants then have to jump through just as many hoops to process the material. This is where highly specialized belt conveyors are greatly needed.
Challenges of Different Operations
Because of the diversity of dry bulk materials, the challenges of terrain, and peculiarities of processes, there's no such thing as a belt conveyor that meets every need perfectly. Many valid systems exist to help serve the individual needs of the operation, all of which have their strengths and weaknesses. Find the right one, though, and the issue of transporting dry bulk solids will be solved for good.
Transporting dry bulk solids requires knowledge of several key factors. Does the product need to be protected from environmental influences (or vice versa)? How much of the product needs to be transported at a time? What kind of incline will be necessary? What is the angle of repose of the material? All of these questions must be answered when determining what conveyor system will work best for you. Once you understand the job at hand, then comes the time to find the right belt conveyor for the job. Cambelt offers many different options, all of which have specific uses that, when properly implemented, will allow production to run both smoothly and quickly.
Specialized Belt Conveyor Solutions
Enclosed or Not Enclosed?
For many operations it is necessary to maintain an air-tight conveyor system. Whether you're protecting your conveyed product, your workers, or both; an enclosed conveyor may be right for the job. Cambelt offers several configurations of enclosed conveyors from long spanning overhead belt conveyors to standardized fixed and portable railcar unloaders. These implements are ideal where special consideration is needed for keeping a sanitary workspace, avoiding contamination of product, or controlling environmental conditions for a product.
Angle of Incline
The angle of incline of a conveyor is largely determined by the physical situation of your farm, mine, quarry, storage facility, loading dock, or processing plant. But consideration must be made for the properties of your material in order for transport to be efficient. Here's where angle of repose of your product becomes very important. If you're handling a bulk material that tends to stay put, they will more readily travel up a steep incline. But if your product likes to flow, this may be more difficult. This doesn't mean an incline conveyor is out of the question, but it does mean we'll have to use some ingenuity where the belting is concerned.
On a flat or shallow surface, handling dry bulk solids is easy. A flat or trough belt will do the job fine. But with an incline, we need to specialize. Cambelt has several innovative belting options that can fit any material and any angle of incline. CamFlex belting features flexible sidewalls and high nubs that are perfect for fast moving and high capacity conveying. They can move even material with very low angles of repose along inclines up to 45°. CamWall belting also has the flexible sidewall but includes tall horizontal cleats that act as walls holding the material in place. This allows for much higher angles of incline. Optionally, buckets can be attached to the CamWall to accommodate vertical conveyor systems.
We offer belting from a variety of different rubber compounds including general purpose, oil and fat resistant, heat resistant, white food grade, etc.
Building Custom Conveyors
If you are a miner, farmer, or anyone else who needs to handle dry bulk solids, you know how tedious it can be to move them with a poor fitting conveyor belt. Fill out a proposal request form with as much information you know about job requirements and we'll contact you to discuss the system that would be the right fit for the job.