A Kansas City, Mo., international system supplier for intralogistic solutions is supplying utility companies with its pipe conveyor to transport household and industrial waste as well as sewage sludge from wastewater treatment plants to power stations. The conveyor is energy efficient and able to convey waste products through public spaces without affecting the environment because of its closed design.
The BEUMER Group utilizes durable conveyor belts that are specially manufactured for the pipe conveyor. The company also has developed proprietary calculation programs that help to dimension all relevant parameters and other customer requirements.
Waste360 recently sat down with Brian Giese, vice president of sales for BEUMER Kansas City, to discuss the conveyor system and its ability to handle complex routes while eliminating transfer towers and any costs that comes with them.
Waste360: What is the pipe conveyor and how does it work for the WTE industry?
Brian Giese: A pipe conveyor is an enclosed belt transport system. The transported material is enclosed inside of a tube, which is created by rolling the conveyor belt into a tube shape on the carry side and the return side. This eliminates spillage on both transport directions.
Waste360: What separates the BEUMER system from others?
Brian Giese: It takes design expertise to build a pipe conveyor. There are approximately 25 pipe conveyors in the U.S., but our system is unique because it eliminates transfer towers which are required with conventional conveyor systems. The system has been available in the U.S. since the early 1990s.
Waste360: What are the benefits of the BEUMER pipe conveyor system?
Brian Giese: For an application that requires complex routing with many transfer towers, the pipe conveyor layout can eliminate all these towers and the associated cost. This reduces maintenance costs in towers and reduces ancillary electrical costs and mechanical equipment in transfer towers that are not needed. The pipe conveyor is also more environmentally friendly because it reduces spillage of material.
Waste360: What are some of the hurdles your company had to overcome when creating the pipe conveyor?
Brian Giese: The challenges of any pipe conveyor route are the minimum radius achievable with the pipe conveyor itself. This is dependent upon the pipe conveyor belt diameter when in the tube shape. The other challenges are that the pipe conveyor is limited in how far it can run before the power required creates too much belt tension. The current limit is around 10 km in length, however most applications are well within this length range limit. The pipe conveyor is not always considered in the initial layout of a new conveyor system. This sometimes misses an opportunity to save money, while enjoying the associated environmental benefits.