Bulk material conveyors are a series of conveyor belts which differ depending on the type of material to be transported and the respective area of application. These are also called conveyor belts, belt conveyors or belt conveyors. Individual goods (piece goods) as well as loose material such as sand (bulk goods) can be transported on these conveyors.
In industry, these are used most often for production (automotive industry). Bulk material conveyors work both underground (mining) and above ground, over short or long distances and are always in continuous use. All these conveyors have in common that they are very efficient, environmentally friendly and extremely productive. Conveyor belts are available at many stations and airports. People stand on a conveyor belt and are transported like in a supermarket. Escalators and treadmills work according to a similar principle. However, people are transported instead of goods.
How does this conveyor technology work?
Several drums are driven by friction. Bulk material conveyors essentially consist of a load-bearing steel construction, roller bearings and a tensioning and drive device. The drive consists of bearings, motor, gear and, depending on the system, with or without an additional coupling. Two versions are available as tensioning stations. The weight tensioning station or the spindle tensioning station with or without tensioning carriage are differentiated according to requirements.
The feeding station is the area where the material reaches the conveyor belt. The discharge station is equipped with a transfer hopper. This is where "unloading" takes place. Scrapers, internal scrapers or preliminary scrapers ensure that nothing sticks to the conveyor belt. This is particularly important for bulk material conveyors. Remaining residues can disturb the material flow. They also reduce the quality of the material being conveyed. Every conveyor system must be equipped with appropriate safety devices such as belt misalignment monitors, speed monitors or tear ropes.
What other types of conveyors are there?
Belt conveyors are designed so that they can convey in two directions and are therefore also referred to as reversing belts. The longest belt of this type transports phosphates from Bou Craa to the Atlantic coast (Western Sahara). Trough conveyors are slightly inclined or horizontal and continuously remove piece or bulk material. The deflection and drive drum guides the endlessly circulating rubber belt. This serves as a pulling and supporting element. Apron belt conveyors are mechanical continuous conveyors. Instead of the belt, boxes, troughs, plates and rods are used. Screw conveyors are based on the principle of the Archimedean screw. The screw conveyor lies in a trough and is driven by a motor. Bulk goods are transported in this way over approx. 60 metres. The systems are very susceptible to wear. High weights, continuous operation and goods (sand, gravel, crushed stone, etc.) which cause a lot of abrasion have a negative effect on the conveyor systems.
The advantages and disadvantages of this conveyor technology:
Highly abrasive and hot materials cause heavy wear of the conveyor belts. The conveyor sections must be aligned in a straight line. The inclination angle of the conveyor system can be changed. However, this is only possible to a limited extent. Dust-tight operation is only possible through constant maintenance and additional mechanical upgrades.
What are the advantages of this conveyor system?
With proper use and regular maintenance, continuous operation is guaranteed. So bulk materials can be moved very well over larger distances without interruption. These are usually heavy and not very easy to transport. It is also an extremely cost-effective method of conveying bulk materials. The belts are easy to set up and clean.
What are the requirements for the manufacturers and what should I pay attention to when buying?
First and foremost, it depends on which bulk material is to be transported. The weight also plays an important role. Is the plant to be moved or stationary? What quantities are transported daily? Is this a custom-made product? Used bulk material conveyors are worth considering. These are available from various dealers and specialist dealers, as well as online, of course. As these are checked and serviced before sale, they have the necessary guarantee. Online purchase is already common practice today.