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Solids Handling & Processing Supplement February 2018

Live & Learn By Ian Birkinshaw, General Secretary – Solids Handling& Processing Association

Once you stop learning you start dying is a quote from Albert Einstein – this sentiment is more relevant today than it has ever been with the advancements in technology moving at a pace never seen before in our history, the need to keep learning is essential. The last century saw the development the motor car, aviation and the world wide web to name but a few. This century the pace of change is increasing rapidly and the need to keep up with this ever-changing technology is vital whether working in business or communicating with your children and grandchildren. From its very beginning in 1981 the Solids Handling and Processing Association (SHAPA ) has existed to produce and disseminate high quality relevant technical, commercial, legal and marketing intelligence in a lively and engaging manner. A little look at last year’s programme of events demonstrates this ambition of living and learning. Earlier in the year the 9th Annual SHAPA Digital Marketing Workshop was presented in association with Susan Hallam a internationally acknowledged expert in this everchanging environment, who has just been awarded and MBE in the new year’s honours list. It’s hard to believe that this event is coming up to its 10th anniversary, but such is the pace of change and rate of uptake of all things digital, that it is vital to keep ahead. Subjects last year included Content Marketing enabling more traffic to be directed to your own website, Google AdWords advertising was reviewed with fresh ideas, as well as selling in LinkedIn and using Twitter to promote your business. We are currently finalising the planning the 10th Anniversary event, which will be held on the 16th May 2018, This annual workshop is for anybody wishing to promote their company by means of digital marketing in an entertaining, hands-on and extremely useful session. On quite a different tack the association held an ATEX and DSEAR seminar in March. This is a constantly relevant topic, with many engineers encountering the ramifications of this legislation for the first time. The seminar tackled the main subject areas including how to build a technical file, legislation, categorisation with zoning, venting, suppression and ignition temperatures – the seminar had speakers from notified bodies and process safety specialists along with practical examples of how to manage the risk of handling and storing potentially explosive powders. The seminar was a great success with those attending feeling that they had moved forward in their knowledge of Atex and DSEAR and how to apply the legislation to real life projects. A further Atex course is planned for 2019 to help those entering the world of Atex and DSEAR. Not every company principal is a financial whiz-kid, many of the owners who start and run companies in the solids handling industry are likely to be engineers and innovators. But, along with the fun part of bringing new products and innovations to the market place comes the vital need to keep finances in order. Profit and loss

accounts, appeasing the taxman, even avoiding prosecution are all beneficial occupations to preserve one’s peace of mind. Clearly it is also important to monitor the financial health of the company as well. In November last year SHAPA presented a Financial and Commercial Awareness Workshop, the second such event at the request of the members. Specifically aimed at those managers for whom finance was not their primary skill, the seminar set out to de-mystify the processes and jargon of financial accounting. One session concentrated on analysing financial information, describing such terms as “ratio trends” and how to apply “ratio analysis”. Delegates gained a better understanding of their own financial objectives and learned how to assess the financial implications of their day-to-day decisions. Total cost of ownership is an old chestnut, but a very important consideration for all SHAPA members and their clients. It is well known that the capital cost of plant is only part of the overall purchase cost and all wise engineering purchasers will probe operating costs, planned maintenance and repair costs, set against the costs of unplanned downtime. Total life span and depreciation are obviously part of the mix too. All of this has being addressed by the SHAPA Technical Committee and a new paper has been produced to give assistance to suppliers and purchasers in navigating the process to ensure that the installed plant operates in line with the overall expectations. Information on this paper has uploaded to the SHAPA website.

Engineering the Future

The need for shrewd, skilled and highly motivated people for our industry has never been greater. SHAPA recognise this ongoing demand and actively encourage up and coming engineers and managers to become the movers and shakers of the future. Regular seminars encompassing education, networking as well as some entertainment feature in the Association’s calendar. The body of knowledge held by SHAPA via committed member companies is huge and growing day by day. We all recognise the need to “stick together” and this is well illustrated by member companies who are suppliers to and customers of each other. Not only that, they frequently find themselves as complementary colleagues working side by side on large projects. It is obvious that Inter-member networking is clearly beneficial to all. As we all know Engineers are in short supply at the present time and attracting the future talent into engineering is becoming more vital for UK PLC. SHAPA are pleased to be helping in this area with the Sponsorship of a Student


in conjunction with the Arkwright Scholarship trust. Through the sponsorship SHAPA will help, mentor and guide the student into the fascinating world of Engineering. For more information on progress of our student visit Georgina’s Blog on the SHAPA Website at www.’s-Blog. SHAPA have also adding the Solids Handling Industry Young Person Award to the list of categories for this year’s Solids Handling Industry Awards to recognise the contribution young people are making to the solids handling sector.

2018 Solids Handling Industry Awards

Following the success of the previous awards highlighting the successes in the solids handling industry community, SHAPA has launched the 2018 Solids Handling Industry awards, these awards are open to all UK registered member and non-member companies and institutions operating in the Solids Handling and Processing Industry. Application forms are available direct from the SHAPA website at Shapa-Awards-Application-Form and winners will be announced and presented at the awards ceremony on the SS Great Britain in Bristol on the evening of 17th April 2018. This year the Solids Handling Industry awards fall into four categories with a closing date for applications on the 28/02/2017. The award categories are Export Award, The Innovation Award, Young Person of the Year, Company of the year Award.

Collective expertise

Clearly no single person or even company can be expert at everything, but for the manufacture and use of solids handling equipment a vast range of expertise is needed. SHAPA offers valuable resources to enable all members to widen their knowledge and experience. Within any major processing enterprise, the supplier of most elements of the flow process system will be both a supplier and a receiver – or “customer” and each supplier will need to know the characteristics of the material delivered to their part of the equipment. Similarly, they will need to pass on appropriate data about the discharge of their product to the next part of the plant. Such communication is essential to ensure a successful project, this is where the members of SHAPA through a common understanding come together to work on projects where their individual expertise is collectively combined to ensure successful projects are delivered into industry.

Commitment to the future

SHAPA may well have celebrated nearly 40 years’ valuable service to our industry, but it is not resting on its laurels and is looking to the future and how best to develop the solids handling community going forward whether its training, networking, celebrating success or wishing to influence government on vital subjects including international trade. Therefore, any company involved in the supply of solids handling equipment and services should consider Joining SHAPA, today’s membership stands at well over 100 companies, who have already tapped into the benefits of membership. Vitally, however, companies and consultants and suppliers involved with new solids handling projects or in the process of updating existing process plant should first consult the Product Finder and technical papers on our website – just a click or two away at www.shapa., or email to


Why do bulk solids handling problems occur? By Richard Farnish – Principal Research Fellow Department of Mechanical & Design Engineering of University of Greenwich

For many plants it is almost a given that when new ingredients or sources of material are introduced into the process that problems will develop with respect to the handling and storage of these materials. Some of the reason for these problems stems from a failure to fully appreciate the importance of investing into the design or procurement of good quality bulk solids handling equipment. For many engineers the topic of bulk solids handling is one that is hard to identify with – since it embodies a very wide range of applied technical areas into a single ‘subject area’. A cursory examination of the ‘state of the art’ for bulk solids handling equipment quickly reveals that many types are very similar in design and operating capability – which also adds complication for engineers (that are not well versed in the topic) when evaluating tender documents. A failure to appreciate the need for an appropriate scale of budget leads to a more tightly controlled CAPEX. This fact combined with a range of tender documents that will likely offer a range of different engineered solutions for a single plant requirement often leads to the successful tender being characterised more by compliance with (or being below) the budget limit than by technical excellence – especially since all submissions will carry process guarantees. One of the reasons why such variations in engineering proposals can be generated is sometimes due to vaguely written specifications that lack sufficient technical rigour upon which to base a fully informed design. A balance should be made between allowing sufficient latitude for suppliers to implement their specialist knowledge with the specification framework and ensuring the inclusion of key technical points to steer their collective responses in a concerted way. This may sound like common sense for the initiation of a tendering process for any industry – but it is all the more critical for the process industries that work with powder or granular materials. The storage and handling characteristics of bulk materials make them very sensitive to the finer points equipment or system designs – which is one reason why so many plants experience problems. An example of the dilemma that can develop relates to the seemingly simple task of procuring a storage silo. Often the main guidance in the specification will focus upon spatial constraints and vessel volume requirements. Reference to the materials to be handled is likely to range from virtually


absent (i.e. just its name) to uninformative from a design perspective (angle of repose, tapped bulk density, median particle size). Consideration as to how the material is likely to behave when passed through the equipment is usually limited to “….discharge reliably…” – again, not very helpful in a practical sense if it transpires that the material is time dependant (requiring first in – first out flow), segregable (needing designed counter measures and mass flow in many cases) or the process requires a consistent and repeatable flow of material from the storage vessel. Too often the implications of not realising these design/ operational requirements are not fully considered at the project planning stage. A failure to request these types of operational conditions often leads to ambiguity in the written requirements – the most fundamental of which is whether core flow or mass flow is a process requirement. Whether a supplier will seek clarification of what is actually needed is unlikely if the specification is interpreted as being a definitive document. In such instances a failure to make clear reference to how the process is intended to work (or how the equipment is intended to integrate with existing plant) can be taken as an indication that no special considerations for design exist. This, in effect, can give suppliers a relatively free hand to fall back on previous experience and standard equipment ranges to compose their response. Thus a common specification can generate quite diverse options between suppliers. Conclusion It makes commercial sense to avoid unnecessary expenditure, however this should always be balanced against the long term risk of operational problems if the selected equipment is not technically sound for the duty asked of it. Although good reference works relating to bulk solids handling are by no means prolific – there are some very useful courses out there that can provide a good foundation in the subject and could serve to help avoid some costly mistakes.


Sieving system for AM powders New Balance adopts revolutionary vibratory sieve with ultrasonic screening technology in production of new 3D-printed trainer New Balance is one of the world’s largest athletic shoe manufacturers. The company aims to bypass conventional industry practices and provides state-of- the-art products to professional athletes and everyday consumers. One of New Balance’s latest innovations is the addition of an additive manufacturing laboratory; boasting the production of the world’s first laser-printed shoe. The ‘Zante Generate’ is the world’s first running shoe with a 3D-printed midsole. Composed of Duraform® TPU Elastomer, the revolutionary sneaker is made using a laser sintering process. A dual-purpose laboratory used for new product development and research, the 3D printing facility processes a variety of additive polymers. Initially, New Balance’s laboratory began by processing small-batch work. However, looking to up-scale to larger levels of production, New Balance turned to Russell Finex for a solution. A Russell Compact Sieve® with Vibrasonic® Deblinding System was the answer. This combination not only fulfils the need to increase throughput, but also ensures the mpurity of processed powders. Daniel Dempsey, New Balance Senior Additive Manufacturing Engineer, was delighted with the solution - “To sieve 20kg of material using our previous equipment would take approximately eight hours. With the Russell Finex sieve, we can do the same amount in roughly ten minutes.” Now an integral part of New Balance’s 3D additive manufacturing lab, the Russell Compact Sieve® with Vibrasonic® Deblinding System is relied upon every day. For New Balance, using this industrial screener is critical to aerate powders before the material is loaded to

a laser sintering machine. Aerating powder increases the flowability of the material, which is required for stable processing of prints running over 24 hours in duration. Aside from increasing flowability, this screener with ultrasonic sieving system has also been credited for freeing time for the additive manufacturing lab’s engineering team as it screens powders much faster than traditional all-day monitored sieves. The addition of the Russell Finex vibratory screener for AM powders has also allowed New Balance to experiment with powder and complete custom batch work in a much quicker fashion. Dempsey continued, “I’ve never had to do a single thing with this machine other than use and clean it. It’s fantastic. The system allows us to speed up the sieving process, and we’ve drastically increased our ability to iterate or prototype within the company due to prototyping the article directly and skipping a couple of rounds of injection moulding before commercialization. If you thinkabout how that affects things like time to market or the product quality, the more iteration you can do the better product you’re going to end up with.” Established in 1934, Russell Finex has over 80 years of experience in working with manufacturing powders. The company, having worked within the 3D printing sector since its beginnings, has built relationships with key equipment manufacturers and end-users, to ensure its separation equipment meets the current and future needs of 3D printing technology. For more information contact Russell Finex Ltd. Tel: +44 (0) 20 8818 2000 E-mail: Web:


PRESSURE IS ON! High Pressure Rotary Valve The DMN-WESTINGHOUSE HP valve with specially designed inlet is very suitable for handling granular formed products under a high pressure of maximum 3.5 bar g. The valve has a very important advantage in air leakage: the special configuration of body, rotor and seals does not only protect product against degradation, it also does not allow any axial air leakage.

DMN-WESTINGHOUSE T +44 1249 818 400 |

FEBRUARY 2018 - SHAPA Supplement

max 3.5 bar g

Features: • Special inlet for maximum protection against product degradation • High filling efficiency • Lowest air leakage through special seals • Robust construction • Easy assembly and disassembly



Brand protection:

Ramping up your food safety strategy Consumer perceptions and a high profile product recall can make or break a food brand. The damage, if left unchecked, can come back and haunt a company for years to come. Phil Brown, Managing Director at Fortress Technology outlines why paying attention to metal contaminant risks continues to be the mainstay of a robust brand protection programme and why it doesn’t pay to take a maverick approach to product inspections. “Consumers today are more aware than ever about where their food has come from and how it’s being handled right across the supply chain,” emphasises Phil. “ As a result of new legislation, domestic and foreign food exporters are under greater pressure to adhere to increasingly stringent levels of compliance and third party audits, whilst also having to contend with an everchanging inspection market.”

Counting the cost of a recall Any contamination is a food safety issue that can have an incendiary effect on a food company’s reputation. With today’s social media culture and 24-hour news reporting, a single contamination incident can make national headlines almost instantly. The reputational and financial consequences can be devastating. Research conducted by the Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies in their 2016 Brand Protection and Product Traceability market research report puts the average cost of a recall for a food company at $10 milion or more in direct costs, business interruption, brand damage and lost sales. Calculating the true cost of a food recall is challenging, as no incident is the same as the next, notes Phil. “Manufacturers need to consider the scale of the recall, how many customers their potentially contaminated product has reached, the stage in which the item is recalled, any fines or penalties incurred, and the drain on resources and business interruption at the production plant,” he comments. Of all the potential contaminants, metal is still the most likely risk in a food processing and packing plant. In the raw ingredient phase, food is exposed to different processes -from cutting meat, filleting fish, grinding spice or mixing dry and wet baking ingredients. Later down the line, you may be packing and cutting larger quantities into more convenient single service portions, creating ready meals using multiple ingredients or preparing ready-cut vegetables -again introducing a possible metal contaminant into the food supply chain.

Choose your checkpoint carefully Supply chain transparency and the speed in which you can publicly pinpoint the source of a metal contaminant are


imperative and can minimise the damage to brand reputation. HACCP guidance states that critical control points (CCPs) should be located at any step where hazards can be prevented, eliminated, or reduced to acceptable levels. Food manufacturers will typically take a cautious approach, inserting more than one metal detector between the beginning and end of the production and packing process. These checkpoints should correspond to the identified CCPs, depending on the predominant risks. When assessing the risks, cost of the product at each checkpoint needs to be factored in. If, for example, you pushed your inspection solely the end of the line, any contamination will be caught at the most expensive part of the production process. Catching a metal contaminant in the raw ingredient stage may cost several hundred pounds as opposed to tens of thousands if you have to recall or waste an entire batch of processed and packaged product,” explains Phil.

Meeting evolving track and trace standards Changes to food safety are being driven by US legislation, and the continuing globalisation of the food chain means harmonisation of food safety standards will be inevitable. From January 2017, food companies have been subject to more frequent audits, with both Safe Quality Food (SQF) and the Food & Drug Administration (FDA)completing annual audits to the FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) standards. Food safety guidelines issued by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) are also largely converging towards FSMA. The compliance deadline dates vary and are staggered based upon the size of a food business. The rules also impact animal feed and for the first time the growing, harvesting, packaging and storage of produce by US and foreign farms. Notably, the new FSMA law impacts the longstanding Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles, which have been superseded by Hazard Analysis and Risk-Based PreventiveControls (HARPC). “The biggest difference in the HARPC standards is that they

extend beyond Critical Control Points. Now, food processors are mandated to document all potential product risks, including naturally occurring hazards and anything that might intentionally or unintentionally get introduced to their facility,” notes Phil. “It also means greater transparency across the entire supply chain.” Again, FSMA legislation is driving the adoption of track-and-trace technologies in the food and beverage sectors. Phil explains: “To facilitate this traceability, a Fortress metal detector system offers secure, automatic logging of information to show that the metal detector is operational and working correctly. This all helps to narrow the time frame during which a problem can go undetected and reducing the amount of suspect products that must be discarded or recalled in case of an incident.” When choosing your inspection technology, in some applications it’s obvious which system to opt for, since only one of them can reliably detect the contaminants that pose the risk you’re trying to mitigate. Yet, recent advances in metal detection technology mean that systems are now even more sensitive to metal contaminants, as well as being more user friendly, another requisite of the FSMA guidance. Summing up, Phil cautions against short-term thrift when measuring food safety risks and protecting brand equity. “It’s important when investing in inspection equipment to look beyond the upfront costs and consider the Overall Equipment Effectiveness and Total Cost of Ownership and factor in the feasibility of upgrading legacy systems. Always try to base your inspection machine decision on the most prevalent food safety risks, and be sure that any technical advantage will actually add value.”


VORTEX GLOBAL LTD. OBTAINS ISO 9001:2015 CERTIFICATION As of December 2017, Vortex Global Limited has been certified to the ISO 9001:2015 standard. Vortex Global’s parent company, Salina Vortex Corporation, made a recent announcement that it too had obtained ISO 9001:2015 certification. Previously, Vortex Global was certified under the ISO 9001:2008 standard, and has been ISO-certified since its establishment in 2007. ISO 9001 is an international standard that specifies requirements for a management system. By gaining ISO 9001:2015 certification, ISO 9001 acknowledges that Vortex Global has demonstrated the ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and regulatory requirements. In essence, the ISO 9001 standard acknowledges Vortex Global’s credibility as a reliable and consistent supplier of material handling equipment and technical services to the dry bulk solids industry. Among the major changes of ISO 9001:2015 versus ISO 9001:2008 was a transition of emphasis from “preventative actions” “and “required documentation” toward more open communication with customers and suppliers, and greater information transparency within the organisation and its shareholders. To ensure the continuous improvement of its quality management system, Vortex Global has been utilising turtle diagrams to assess the effectiveness of their Enquiry, Stock Control, and Works Order processes. These diagrams are revised annually to better Vortex Global’s processes and, ultimately, improve customer satisfaction from more efficient operations. To improve internal transparency, Vortex Global’s top management created a document to assess both short-term and long-term opportunities and risks for the company’s operations, and developed strategies for how those opportunities and risks will be approached to improve the business. Created in unison with Vortex Headquarters in Salina, Kansas, USA, Vortex Global’s top management also assisted in the development of a long-term business plan to provide Vortex employees and stakeholders with a clear understanding of the company’s goals and strategic objectives for the future. Vortex Global has demonstrated that within their small staff, cross-training efforts have been effective, job roles have been well-defined, and project information and product knowledge is recorded in a way that it is transferrable among the entire staff. As a result, Vortex Global has constructed an efficient and high quality management programme. “Maintaining ISO compliance is a leading objective for Vortex Global, as it ensures the quality of our management system and allows us to continue our relationships with Blue Chip companies,” said Laurence Millington, managing director at Vortex Global Limited. “By clearly defining, monitoring and measuring our company objectives – and emphasising the importance of meeting those objectives – Vortex Global Limited has seen rapid growth since its conception ten years ago and continues to be well-respected among the industries in which we operate.” To download Vortex Global’s ISO 9001:2015 certificate, see For more information contact Vortex Global Ltd. Darlington, County Durham. Tel: +44 (0) 1325 728 577 Email: Web::

FEBRUARY 2018 - SHAPA Supplement



Pneumatic Conveying Performance Dynamic Air offers 16 different pneumatic conveying concepts: Each system has its own unique set of operating characteristics for pressure, conveying line velocity, efficiency and performance. Because each and every material to be conveyed reacts differently under a given set of operating conditions, it is critical to match the system operating characteristics to the material to be conveyed in order to achieve the most desired conveying performance and to provide the best value. Dynamic Air’s 16 different pneumatic conveying concepts have the ability to convey at almost any conveying velocity desired to suit a given material to be conveyed. We can convey many materials with conveying velocities as low as .25 m/sec. using our HDP 6000 dense phase pneumatic conveying system and, using our LDP 2000 dilute phase pneumatic conveying system, we can convey at velocities well over 35m/sec. Plus our conveying capacities range from just 100 kg of material per hour up to 400 tons per hour and conveying distances exceeding 1500 m in length. For more information contact Dynamic Air Ltd, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, UK. Phone: 44 1908 622344 E-mail: | Web:


John R Boone Mixers Keep Agrochemical Blends Moving Leading British mixer and blender manufacturer John R Boone have supplied Exwold Technology in Teesside with three 4000 litre capacity low-shear mixers as part of a new installation that has expanded Exwold’s agrochemical production facility. Exwold selected John R Boone Horizontal Helical Blade Mixers (HHBM) for their reliability, value for money, quality and ease of cleaning. Exwold is a contract manufacturer of agricultural and speciality chemicals with four sites in the North East employing more than a hundred people. They pride themselves on flexible and fast moving R&D with a speciality in water-dispersible granules (WDG). A material that is to be converted to granules is inherently prone to agglomeration, and the challenge that Exwold MD Kevin Martin presented was to supply mixers that keep the material fluid, well separated and clog-free while it progresses through the process. Exwold considered several possible manufacturers, choosing John R Boone after tests showed that the very low speed ribbon agitators of the HHBM would maintain mix fluidity while putting very little work into the material. In this case the HHBM has a U shaped body and four helical blades that sweep the entire length of the mixer providing a very gentle yet thorough, end-to- end mixing action with very low product retention. A pre-mix with approximately 3mm particle size is loaded into the first of the three John R Boone HHBM, which then feeds a reverse jet mill that reduces the particle size to micron dimensions. From there the powder is sent to two further John R Boone HHBM before going on to the extrusion press to be formed into granules. At all stages, it is critical that the mix is kept mobile, and presented to the discharge point consistently and completely. Exwold manufacture in campaigns that last several weeks and cleanliness between batches is vital. As Kevin Martin put it, “the Boone mixers offer easy access for inspection, easy access for cleaning and maintenance along with good quality and performance”. The low contact area design of the mixer body and minimum number of blades make cleaning simpler and quicker, and John R Boone also installed CIP equipment within each mixer to further reduce cleaning time. The new plant is now in full operation, producing granular products.

For more information contact JR Boone Limited, Congleton, Cheshire Tel: +44 (0)1260 272894 | | Web:


Solutions that meet every process step Coperion is the international market and technology leader in compounding and extrusion systems, feeding and weighing technology, bulk materials handling systems and services for the plastics, chemicals, food and pharma industries. Especially for the food industry we offer EHEDG approved design for food system components, rotary valves and diverter valves. As an integrated technology provider, Coperion and Coperion K-Tron use the comprehensive system and process expertise to implement individual solutions for compounding technology and bulk materials handling for our customers. This covers the full added value chain of the production process from consultation and planning, through engineering, process optimization, manufacturing, delivery, installation and commissioning to our worldwide service network. We collaborate with our customers on innovative new and further development of components, machines and systems, forming the basis for long-lasting, successful partnerships in which customer benefit is always to the fore together with efficiency, reliability and quality. For more information contact: Coperion Ltd. / Coperion K-Tron Great Britain Ltd Stockport, Cheshire. Tel.: +44 161 209 4810 Fax: +44 161 474 0292 Email: | Web:

FEBRUARY 2018 - SHAPA Supplement

New Project Engineer joins British Rema Powder processing specialist British Rema has further strengthened its engineering team with the appointment of Miro Kardasz as Project Engineer. Miro’s appointment supports continued growth in British Rema’s Equipment division, including its recent success in securing a major contract for a turnkey aluminium hydroxide grinding and classification plant to Alum SA, Romania. Miro will also focus on capacity expansion projects within British Rema’s Contract Processing division. Miro was awarded an MEng in Mechanics and Mechanical Engineering from the University of Szczecin, Poland in 2004. His appointment at British Rema follows 10 years as Project Engineer at UK-based Metalysis, where he was responsible for managing a variety of projects, primarily in the design and development of equipment for processing metallic and oxide powders. Prior to this he worked in engineering roles for Simatra France Group in Poland. British Rema specialises in the milling, micronising, classification and blending of powders and is a leading supplier of powder processing equipment and contract processing services to the Aerospace, Chemical, Food, Plastics, Metal Powders, Mineral and Pharmaceutical industries. For more information contact British Rema, Tel: +44 (0)1246 269955 Email: Web:


British Rema attains ISO 9001:2015 accreditation Powder processing specialist British Rema has recently received accreditation for ISO 9001:2015, the newest update to the internationally-recognised Quality Management System Standard. Previously the company was certified under the ISO 9001:2008 standard and has been ISOcertified since 2001 when the standard was introduced. Accreditation to the ISO 9001:2015 standard is recognition that British Rema consistently provides products and services which meet customer and regulatory requirements; giving customers additional confidence when entering into commercial agreements with the company. Commenting on achieving ISO 9001:2015 accreditation, Simon Abbott, General Manager, said, “ISO 9001 is an important and internationally-accepted benchmark that further supports our continuing commitment to providing customers with an unrivalled, world-class service. This certification also reflects our commitment to quality and full traceability which is essential when handling high value applicationcritical materials on behalf of global suppliers to highly-regulated industries such as aerospace and nuclear reprocessing. The latest version of the quality management standard is the most recent in a series of quality and continuous improvement initiatives that British Rema has put in place to maintain its position as a leading supplier in the field of powder processing.” For more information contact British Rema, Tel: +44 (0)1246 269955 Email: | Web:


Safe Drum Handling in a Material World When speciality fabric manufacturer Vlisco approached Hosokawa Micron Ltd seeking a contained drum handling solution to provide a physical barrier between the operator and product to protect their workforce from contact with airborne, fabric dye particles, they were explicit in the challenges that needed to be met. These including the safe handling of drums of various sizes and the de-lidding, opening and emptying of drums into a reactor vessel within a contained environment. Hosokawa Micron engineers responded with a bespoke designed drum tipping glovebox, built around the dye reactor vessel, that met all the customer’s requirements including an Operator Exposure Level of <5 µg/m³ to protect operators potentially harmful dusts. Drums and kegs of different sizes and weights are presented to the glovebox on a roller track and manually moved into the glovebox before being connected to the drum tipper. Drums are de-lidded and bags opened before special container clamps suitable for handling a range of weights/sizes attach the drums to the lifting/tipping device. The drums are then automatically lifted, rotated and dropped onto the reactor where they are located into position to secure and reduce dust creation on discharge. The system is operated under a nitrogen blanket to minimise dust explosion risk and is engineered for ATEX compliance with drum lifting and rotation operated by intrinsically safe air motors. As the reactor vessel contains hydrochloric acid, special coatings are applied to the glovebox chamber and plastic parts were used to make up the filter and extraction systems utilising plastic fans, pipework and plastic coated valves and filters. As an original and heritage textile design company, Vlisco welcomed Hosokawa’s bespoke approach to providing a purpose designed containment solution that reduced both manual handling of drums and operator risk. Michiel Soolsma, Process & Quality Engineer, Vlisco says, ‘From the first contact, Hosokawa made a great impression by understanding our problems and coming up with possible solutions. Although we needed more time before starting the project, Hosokawa showed patience and assisted us when asked. From the start to the end of the project Hosokawa showed their experience and engineered a glovebox that is operator friendly and could be integrated in our new installation. I personally enjoyed working together with their engineers on this project with Hosokawa.’ For over 170 years, Vlisco has created more than 350,000 original textile designs. Many of these designs have become cultural treasures, bestowed with special names and meanings by the merchants of Central and West Africa. For further information/reader enquiries, please contact: Hosokawa Micron Ltd, Rivington Road, Runcorn, Cheshire, Tel: +44 (0) 1928 755100 Email: or Web:

On the level, every mm counts Every engineer wants the best accuracy level sensor they can get, but this specification often comes at an extra premium. Not today. The VEGAPULS 64 80 GHz contactless radar level transmitter now has increased its accuracy down to 1mm as standard, at no extra cost. This means, whether in storage or processing, you will get the best repeatability and accuracy of measurement on ranges up to 30m. Combine this with the sensors proven focusing, its ability to deal with build up, how it can operate even on the smallest of mounting connections, or that it even works through valves and down long nozzles - this all results in a great level solution for your process. Don’t take our word for it, ask the tens of thousands of users already utilising this 80 GHz technology. For more information contact VEGA Controls Ltd, Burgess Hill, West Sussex. Tel: (+ 44) 01444 870055 E-mail: Web:



Airborne Dust is a Risk to your Business - Are You Really Willing to Take It? Why is it a risk? Inspections are being targeted at industries processing dusty materials. There is a real health and safety driver behind this. PM 10 particles and smaller find their way deep into lungs where they gradually cause long term damage. The result is the development of COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease). Whilst smoking is often a contributory cause, inhalation of workplace dust is another significant one. How is it a risk to my business? Contracting COPD does not happen overnight; it is a gradual process. Symptoms can take more than a decade to develop. It is similar in this respect to Asbestosis. This means that future claims will look at the employment history of a COPD sufferer and work their way back through employers. Those employers whose work environment is found wanting can expect the full force of the law to hit them at sometime in the future. To see how this might work, a quick online search reveals how lawyers are trawling back through company records for asbestosis sufferers to find companies, their directors and group owners. The risk you are taking is of a future “knock on the door” to discuss a claim. Some companies were wiped out by asbestos claims. By ignoring airborne dust you risk your company’s future should claims be made against you. You also have a duty of care to operate a safe working environment. How can I resolve this? Put simply, take immediate steps to reduce and eliminate the risk. Localised dust collection can address the sources, but in many processes, dust becomes airborne due to vehicle movements, tippers, open process areas and similar. Dust Control in EfW Wood Preparation An effective way to solve dust problems in these areas is to use a fogging system to suppress the dust. The Renby MicronFog™ system has been designed to achieve just this. Nozzles can be placed around a dust source e.g. a reception hopper, and provide a curtain of fog that contains the dust. Other approaches are to fit a roof mounted system to provide general suppression. Renby designs it’s MicronFog™ systems to avoid wetting and systems are in use on dry powder bagging and onion packing lines. Both of these applications cannot risk any wetting of the product. We are happy to discuss your application and in many cases find that we have already done a similar installation. Act Now. Don’t wait for an improvement notice. Contact Renby Ltd now on Tel: 01829 740913 Email: | Web:

Why do bulk solids handling problems occur? The problem: - Arching of materials in silo? - Caking of materials in storage? - Irregular discharging of materials into packaging? - Materials getting stuck in the silo? The reason? - Incorrect equipment dimension design; - Material behaviour has not been assessed; - Lack of or Incorrect use of discharge aids; - Incorrect interfacing; - …and so on… Want to learn more? Short Courses on Storage of Bulk Materials - Storage and Discharge of Powders and Bulk Solids 13 – 15 March A comprehensive introduction providing a basic understanding of the operation of hoppers and silos - Design of Equipment for Storing and Handling Bulk Materials 17 – 18 April Targeting project engineers involved in the detail specification of bulk handling schemes or design engineers involved in the construction of equipment used for storing bulk materials For more information contact: The Wolfson Centre for Bulk Solids Handling Technology; Tel: +20 8331 8646 | E-mail: | Web:

Rotary Valves – Air Leakage and Performance Check out our training video at and do get in touch for any advice. All rotary valves leak air (or gas) even where there is no pressure differential as even the product entering the valve displaces air into the inlet area. This is significantly increased when operating under a pressure differential due to losses past the operational clearances and carry-over of pockets of high pressure decompressing into the inlet. The total of such losses are normally referred to as ‘leakage’ and given a single quantity value. There are many factors that affect the rate of leakage and the ratio of the elements that make up the total. All are affected by the system conditions prevailing at any given time. In practical terms most manufacturers only offer leakage charts based on tests measuring leakage past valves in a static, product-free condition. Because the presence of product has a mitigating effect on leakage, known as the ‘Blocking Factor’, the manufacturer’s published rates are seen as having adequate contingency for providing allowances for sizing blowers, fans etc. Where leakage rates are considered critical then better analysis will be necessary, taking into all aspects of the duty conditions. What is important is that upward leakage can have a significant effect on the system performance either positively or negatively especially where the valve is operating in a flooded condition. The upward flow can reduce throughput by opposing product flow as well as aerating the product and reducing its bulk density. Allowance for this must be made when sizing the Rotary Valve. This is progressively less of a problem as valve sizes increase as the larger throat sizes make for better dispersion of leakage air. Valves should also be fitted direct to the outlet of any hopper so that leakage air can disperse easily. This is less of a problem when the valve is not controlling the throughput but care needs to be taken if the conditions could result in flood feeding at any time. For more details on air leakage, contact Gericke RotaVal,

Tel:+ 44 1249 651138 E-mail: Web: FEBRUARY 2018 - SHAPA Supplement



Silo Stock Measurement Made Simple Load cells fitted to a Barton Silo provide accurate ‘real time’ content measurement

State of the art silo stock measurement systems can be used to provide accurate ‘real time’ monitoring of storage vessel contents and detect potential system faults or raw material clumping problems. Associated telemetry can then be used to automatically e-mail raw material suppliers to replenish silo stocks, or alert on-site teams to pro-actively investigate problems: this ensures a continuous supply of feedstock for a customer’s production process. Barton Fabrications, the UK’s largest manufacturer of aluminium silos, working together with Applied Weighing International – a complete weighing systems supplier - offers precise silo content management systems for standard industrial and hazardous area environments. The systems are available on both new silo installations and as a retrofit to existing plant complementing both Barton Fabrication’s silos and other manufacturers’ vessels. The silo stock measurement systems comprise three or four load cells mounted under the silo, which for food applications can be fitted with Barton’s hygienic sealed skirt design to prevent vermin access to the area beneath the silo. The load cells are connected to Applied Weighing’s Intelligent Junction Box. This unit not only provides a single signal output from up to four load cells, but also monitors load cell or cable faults. In addition, the system will also detect silo ‘out of balance’ loading, which may be caused by raw material bridging / clumping or an obstruction under the silo base. Further investigation and remedial action

Applied Weighing’s telemetry system provides real time silo content data and monitors weighing system faults

can then be taken to avoid erroneous weight readings and potential raw material shortages. The output from the Intelligent Junction Box (or boxes) is fed using CAN BUS connectivity to the Teleonix2 telemetry system. This enables vessel content / status to be reviewed via the internet (the system can be configured to limit the information viewed). Additionally, re-order e-mails can be sent automatically to suppliers when pre-determined silo levels are reached. This information is then used to ensure full tanker loads are delivered in a timely manner, providing efficient silo stock control with minimum risk of feedstock shortage. Barton Fabrications manufactures bespoke aluminium and stainless steel silos with Applied Weighing’s content measurement / management systems for both new and retrofit vessel installations as detailed in this report. For more details on silo stock measurement solutions, contact Mark Barton at Barton Fabrications: Tel: +44 (0) 1275 845901 E-mail: Web: Or sales at Applied Weighing International Tel :+44 (0) 118 946 1900 E-mail: Web:



SAVE THE DATE FOR BULKEX18! BULKEX18, the Materials Handling Engineers Association’s annual exhibition, conference and awards ceremony has launched for 2018. Taking place at Eastwood Hall, Nottingham on 17-18 October 2018, the twoday event includes a full conference programme for delegates, taking place in the MHEA’s 80th year. With a pronounced technical emphasis, and focusing on current and imminent industry opportunities, BULKEX18 is a must-attend event for professionals, organisations and academics from across the bulk handling arena. The exhibition is open to both members and non-members and anyone interested in participating can find out more on the BULKEX18 website Adopting the successful format from last year’s event, John Connolly, MHEA’s President, said, “BULKEX is the premier event for those in the bulk materials handling sector. With around 50 spaces for exhibitors to showcase their products and services, and visitors that include industry buyers, suppliers, and specialists, we are tremendously excited about BULKEX18 as we celebrate 80 years supporting members. “Our conference programme will build on the 2017 programme, and we anticipate an eminent list of guest speakers that will have a broad appeal. We would encourage anyone planning exhibiting to book their space as soon as possible. Equally, those businesses who have innovative case studies or new projects, should seriously consider speaking at BULKEX18. We are announcing our Call for Papers - senior industry thinkers and business leaders are invited to submit papers and case studies to share with delegates.” Wednesday 17 October will see another celebration of the industry’s finest achievements at Eastwood Hall. 2018 is the Government’s Year of the Engineer and the MHEA is supporting the occasion by launching a new award, Engineer of the Year. The exhibition’s space-only places are already filling up and there are also a range of sponsorship opportunities available to suit all budgets. Companies wishing to exhibit at the event or to find out more about sponsorship, can contact the BULKEX18 event team on 01787 226995 (ask for Teresa or Julie).

FAIRPORT DELIVERS ON TIME FOR MAJOR SHUT DOWN Having been awarded the contract in earlier in 2017 Fairport Engineering Ltd (FEL) of Adlington, Lancashire has now delivered some 12 drag link conveyors and 5 bucket elevators to a new client in Nigeria. These pieces of equipment and various ancillaries such as actuated valves, chute-work and spares will form the key mechanical units in a challenging project to increase production capacity from 65t/h to some 200t/h. Predominantly these pieces of process equipment will be used to extract wheat from a number of silos and transfer it to the milling area facilities as well as adding a separate, new lorry loading system; all as depicted below. Fairport, as well as being able to design and supply these specialist machines also has an all-round turnkey capability that allows it to work in an advantageous partnership manner with many clients. On this particular project Fairport has supplied the proprietary electrical and instrumentation equipment for the system. FEL have provided structural steelwork, calculations and detail drawings for local supply. The client is also providing civil works, electrical cabling and overall installation all of which is to be provided in accordance with Fairport’s design and engineering requirements and on-site management and supervision requirements. If you would like further information about this project then please contact our Communications Manager : FEBRUARY 2018 - SHAPA Supplement



MOBILE FLEXIBLE SCREW CONVEYOR FOR BULK BAG DISCHARGING AND MANUAL DUMPING A new FLEXICON ÂŽ Mobile Flexible Screw Conveyor with multi-purpose hood transfers material discharged from bulk bags and/or manually dumped from handheld sacks into elevatedprocess equipment or storage vessels dust free. Mounted on a frame with locking castors for in-plant mobility, the system improves mobility and reduces cost by eliminating heavy frame components typically employed to support bulk bags, relying on the userâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s forklift or plant hoist to suspend the bag above the unit during operation. An iris valve positioned atop the dust hood allows variable control of flow through the bulk bag spout. A bag support tray and hinged door allow the manual addition of minor ingredients from handheld sacks. The flexible screw conveyor transports both free- and non-free- flowing bulk materials including products that pack, cake, smear, seize or fluidise, with no separation of blends. Mounting flanges at the discharge end of the conveyor support boom permit the addition of a metal detector below the conveyor outlet. All material contact surfaces are of stainless steel finished to sanitary or industrial standards with the exception of the conveyors polymer outer tube. The mobile frame is constructed of carbon steel with a durable industrial coating, and is also available in stainless steel. Flexicon also manufactures stationary flexible screw conveyors, tubular cable conveyors, pneumatic conveying systems, bulk bag dischargers, bulk bag conditioners, bulk bag fillers, bag dump stations, drum/box/container tippers, weigh batching and blending systems, and engineered plant-wide bulk handling systems with automated controls. For information contact Flexicon Europe Ltd, Tel: +44 (0)1227 374710 Email:,| Web:







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Solids Handling & Processing Association Supplement February 2018  
Solids Handling & Processing Association Supplement February 2018