Saturday 23rd Oct, 2021

The modern challenges of industrial powder conveying

Hazardous material reclassifications can create headaches for bulk powder handlers. That’s why Floveyor has designed a solution to futureproof plant operations in the face of changing regulations.

The logistical challenges of handling hazardous, abrasive, and explosive powders have long been the focus of conveying manufacturer Floveyor.

Loading and decanting road tankers from disposable bulk bags brings with it several limitations, especially when transferring dry powders and granules for construction, chemical and manufacturing applications.

Rhys Walker, Managing Director of Floveyor says hazardous material reclassifications have become an unwelcome challenge in industrial manufacturing.

“When regulations change, or when there’s industrial action over worker’s safety when handling powders, your entire plant can be impacted. The recent Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) complaint about the danger of silicosis from engineered stones and the dusts they create is a good example,” he says.

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The ACTU called on the Federal Government to urgently act on silicosis on 7 June 2021, saying that one in five of those who work with engineered stone are diagnosed with the incurable disease.

ACTU Assistant Secretary Liam O’Brien said these diseases are entirely preventable and the Federal Government must ban high silica content engineered stone products and promote the use of safer alternatives.

Walker says another example is the European Commission’s (EC) reclassification of titanium dioxide. The EC updated its regulations and standards and reclassified titanium dioxide as a “carcinogen category 2 by inhalation”. It said precautionary measures need to be taken to minimise the hazard for human health. Employers have no choice but to implement better safety measures in their plant.

One way to mitigate these kinds of regulatory problems is to manage dust from the onset. Walker says using a fully enclosed system to transfer powders and granules is the best way to circumvent the impact of future health and safety regulations.

“We rely on our FloDisc technology in our conveyors, to create the safe environment for powder handling,” he says.

“It uses centrifugal force to suspend raw materials in an air pocket and propel them to a collection point in an enclosed tube, with a minimal amount of dust.

“This provides a rapid but gentle way to convey a wide range of materials in food, construction, chemical, manufacturing, and resources industry and logistics applications.”

The Endura series handles decanting and bulk loading of intermediate bulk bags, flexible intermediate bulk containers (FIBCs) and sea containers into pneumatic and road tanker trucks. A range of complementary equipment provides integration to brownfield sites while meeting rigorous global compliance and safety standards.

“Because so many of our customers are working in industrial settings, safety is always front of mind in our engineering department,” Walker says,

“Every Floveyor conveyor in the Endura series is designed to make vast improvements in how FIBCs are handled when discharging into and from road ankers.

“We’re committed to creating a rapid, safe, and low-maintenance conveying environment. Only gravity silos can transfer raw materials into pneumatic road tankers at a high transfer rate.”

Using an original Floveyor machinery for manufacturing, resources and chemical industries means the transfer of powders and granules is faster, cleaner and at a reduced cost. Every engineering design and production detail in the Endura series reflects Floveyor’s commitment to creating a rapid, safe, and low-maintenance conveying environment.

“We’ve been manufacturing in Perth, Western Australia, since 1958 and we’re always amazed to hear stories about how long people have been using the same machine.

“It’s also a great chance for us to provide customer service, in person, and hear about new trends in the market. More than anything, it’s a chance to catch up with the industry after a long break. We’re bringing a whole team, and everyone is feeling positive about going.”