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Publication of the SA Institution of Mechanical Engineering, incorporating News of Associate Organisations


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VOL 69 October 2019



Engineering Activity and Professional Competency


he evidence of engineering activity is all around us. The homes we live in, the cars we drive, the telephones we talk on and the medical equipment we have to help us diagnose and treat our health issues. It is not possible to look around the built environment and not notice something that is the result of engineering activity. We live today very much in an engineered world. Further, this engineered world has very definite levels of complexity easily observed as we look around. From the “simple” piece of steel that is called a crowbar and used as a lever to get something moved to the hugely complex pieces of equipment that float around in space creating a network of communication devices that have become an integral part of our daily lives.

are complex problems requiring Malcolm Black competent people to solve them.

Professionals needed

The SAIMechE has recognised the need for competent professionals to participate in the process of building a functional nation. Competence measured by objective assessment criteria that avoid any cultural, racial or gender “gate keeping” accusations. A Professional Development Programme that will enable graduates to develop the skills and levels of competence to make a valuable contribution to society has been developed. A competence developed through a guided interaction with experienced, accredited and competent mentors within commercial environments that are project oriented and deal with daily concerns and fundamental needs and issues.

Not so simple

You may have noticed that the word simple was placed in inverted commas. Is the crowbar that “simple”? What material is it made of? How was that material made? How was the crowbar formed into the tool that is used in so many situations? How are similar crowbars (levers) used in various combinations of increasing complexity that form the various parts of machines used in our everyday lives. All this requires engineers who are competent to participate in complex engineering ctivities. Competence is a fundamental requirement of a complex evolving society. We have recently been informed that the South African population is approaching 60 million people. We are also told that close to 10 million are without work. Many do not have the basic requirements to live meaningful lives because of endless struggles with poverty. These

The engineered world has very definite levels of complexity easily observed as we look around

Candidate engineers, engineering business and society in general could benefit from this programme by giving support to it through participation, financial commitment and an awareness that without the involvement of competent engineers many of our complex societal problems may not be solved. The SAIMechE, through its numerous branches, is committed to serving the needs of its members and the community at large by providing this service. Malcolm Black Professional Development Programme, SAIMechE


VOL 69 October 2019


ALWAYS THERE, MAKING IT WORK. ��u �an trust BI t� �r����e the �ear�n�s an� ���er trans��ss��n s��ut��ns ��u nee� e�����ent�� an� ��st�e��e�t��e��. áƺȵƏȸɎȇƺȸɯǣɎǝɵȒɖƺɮƺȸɵɀɎƺȵȒǔɎǝƺɯƏɵِ Gear���es ��e� R�n�s Bushes ��ut�hes ��u���n�s �ha�n � ��r���ets Be�ts � �u��e�s A�r��u�tura� �r��u�ts ÁƺǼ‫׎׎׎׎חחז׏׏ואڷ‬ ǣȇǔȒ۬ƫƺƏȸǣȇǕɀِƬȒِɿƏ ɯɯɯِƫƺƏȸǣȇǕɀِƬȒِɿƏ

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Publication of the SA Institution of Mechanical Engineering, incorporating News of Associate Organisations



On the Cover SKF Chris Lubbe Tel: (011) 821-3500 www.skf.co.za

Cover Story



SA Institute of Tribology

23 Dealing With Wastewater the Smart Way

10 What Maintenance Professionals Should Know About Tribology

Lubrication 25 Greased for a Lifetime

Precious Stones


Bearings Small Talk

13 All Things Bright and Sparkly

26 Smart Building Under Threat



15 Solving Problems Faster


An Engineer’s View

16 All Ahead for Solar Power


Institution News

Power Transmission

30 Market Forum

Complete Power Independence

19 Making Secure Connections

38 On the Move


All rights reserved. No editorial matter published in “SA Mechanical Engineer” may be reproduced in any form or language without written permission of the publishers. While every effort is made to ensure accurate reproduction, the editor, authors, publishers and their employees or agents shall not be responsible or in any way liable for any errors, omissions or inaccuracies in the publication, whether arising from negligence or otherwise or for any consequences arising therefrom. The inclusion or exclusion of any product does not mean that the publisher or editorial board advocates or rejects its use either generally or in any particular field or fields. Produced by: PROMECH PUBLISHING, P O Box 373, Pinegowrie, 2123, Republic of South Africa Tel: (011) 781-1401, Fax: (011) 781-1403 Email: samecheng@promech.co.za, www.promech.co.za Managing Editor Susan Custers Editorial Contributors Liesl Venter/Patricia Holburn Advertising Sales: Louise Cresswell Cell: 071 886 1263 DTP: Sanette Badenhorst Circulation: Netta Janse van Rensburg Subscriptions Please email us at accounts@promech.co.za if you wish to subscribe to “SA Mechanical Engineer” at R550,00 (excl postage and VAT) per year; R1 380,00 per year for Africa/ Overseas. Disclaimer

PROMECH Publishing and The South African Institution of Mechanical Engineering as well as any other body do not take responsibility for the opinions expressed by individuals.

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Official Publication of

THE SA INSTITUTION OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERING and endorsed by:             



VOL 69 October 2019


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www.thepeartree.co.za e-mail: info@thepeartree.co.za Tel: 011 781 1401 41 St. Albans Ave, Craighall Park



VOL 69 October 2019


Council 2018 - 2020

Company Affiliates

Office Bearers

President......................................................Prof D Blaine (Debby) Vice President....................................... H Makwarela (Hangwani) National Treasurer.............................Prof JL van Niekerk (Wikus)

Branch Chairpersons


Osborn Engineered Products SA (Pty) Ltd

Autodesk as represented by Worldsview Technologies

Central ............................................................... A Celliers (Alicia) Eastern Cape........................................... G van den Berg (Gideon) KwaZulu-Natal ........................................ Dr J Padayachee (Jared) Mpumalanga Highveld ................................. M Mashele (Mishael) Vaal.............................................................. N Swanepoel (Niekie) Western Cape .................................................Dr G Erfort (Gareth)

Babcock Ntuthuko Engineering Pty Ltd Eskom Rotek Industries SOC Ltd

Plant Design & Project Services (Pty) Limited (PDPS) PPS Insurance Co Limited Proconics

Esteq Group (Pty) Ltd

Redheads Engineering Services (Pty Ltd)

Exxaro Resources (Pty) Ltd

S.A.M.E Water (Pty) Ltd

Procedures.......................................................... SZ Hrabar (Steve) Communications and Marketing..................G Bartholomew (Bart) TBC...........................................................MAE Black (Malcolm) TBC..............................................................HG Bosman (Tertius)

Festo (Pty) Ltd

SA Power Services (Pty) Ltd

Fluor SA (Pty) Ltd

Sasol Technology (Pty) Ltd

Kelvion Systems (Pty) Ltd

Siemens (Pty) Ltd

Hatch Africa (Pty) Ltd

Spirax Sarco (Pty) Ltd

Chief Executive Officer..................... Vaughan Rimbault Digital Communication Specialist... Anisa Nanabhay

Howden Power (a div of Howden Africa)

Tenova Mining and Minerals SA

Howden Projects (a div of James Howden)

Thyssenkrupp Engineering (Pty) Ltd

MBE Minerals (SA) (Pty) Ltd

Vital Engineering (Pty) Ltd


Weir Minerals Africa


National Office Co-ordinator………....… Carey Evans

PO Box 511, Bruma, 2026 Tel: (011) 615-5660 Email: info@saimeche.org.za Website: www.saimeche.org.za Membership Email: membership@saimeche.org.za

Mod-U-Flow CC

26 Nagington Road, Wadeville, Germiston 1400, South Africa Tel +27 11 824 4810 / Fax +27 11 824 2770 E-mail info@apepumps.co.za / info@matherandplatt.com Website www.apepumps.co.za / www.matherandplatt.com

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VOL 69 October 2019



Bearings Small Talk Treat your bearings right and there should be fewer holes in your budget. That’s the word from Chris Lubbe, engineering manager at SKF, South Africa.


A Mechanical Engineer” recently met up with Chris at the SKF facility in Boksburg to find out more about the bearings market, the latest technology and a few bearing do’s and don’ts.

Growth in Africa

“The local bearings market is relatively flat,” Chris says. “It’s not showing growth, but not declining either. There were some fireworks expected after elections, but those didn’t happen.“ The market has been maintaining itself. “The biggest growth for us is in Africa,” he confirms,

highlighting servicing and condition monitoring as areas gaining traction on the sub-continent. SKF South Africa supports sub-Saharan Africa.

Tech-savvy bearings

Condition monitoring is where hardware, the bearing, meets software, the systems monitoring performance. Condition monitoring allows teams to see if equipment is performing as it should or if there are inefficiencies. Monitoring this 24 hours a day means that problems can be identified before they become breakdowns and can be dealt with through planned maintenance. “Our online systems can detect faults such as primary bearing defects earlier through enveloped acceleration vibration monitoring,” Chris adds. “Acceleration and velocity vibration, as well as temperature measurements are also monitored by our online systems.” This information can be accessed by teams 24/7.

Our condition monitoring systems are really exceptional and the combination of our software and hardware give us a unique place in the market and a strong competitive edge “The analysis is very detailed, so we can accurately identify where the issue is coming from.” Chris Lubbe



Chris explains that the team can then notify and

VOL 69 October 2019

accredited.” As another value-add to customers, Lincoln Lubrication, an SKF group company, offers customers lubrication products and services.

guide the customer where there is a problem, plan for maintenance or repairs, mobilize a team for the alignment, raptor replacement, or whatever is needed. “Our condition monitoring systems are really exceptional and the combination of our software and hardware give us a unique place in the market and a strong competitive edge,” he comments.

Bearing do’s and don’ts

Proper bearing care can go a long way to better performance and longer life. We asked Chris for a few bearing do’s and don’ts. “These are straightforward,” he asserts. “The do’s are ensuring seating, fitment and alignment are correct and that maintenance and lubrication are as intended. Get these right and you’ll get long service. It’s not rocket science, but critical to performance.” These guidelines aren’t always followed, which leads to problems and a shorter life-span. “One of the common challenges customers face is that they don’t have skilled staff on site who can identify problems and check that the bearings are running as they should, and perform maintenance checks,” Chris points out. Recognising these challenges and helping customers solve them is where companies like SKF add further value to their clients. “We have a vast product offering from autolubrication, dismounting tools and easy-to-use alignment tools to simplify the process. Products have advanced phenomenally in the last decade which makes it easier to compensate for the skills loss. We also offer full training from bearing basics and maintenance through to vibration analysis. Our training centre at SKF Boksburg is BINDT

“The integration with Lincoln can’t be stressed enough,” Chris says. “We have supplier initiatives with Lincoln where products add value to users.”

Critical component

We ask what happens when it goes really wrong and bearings aren’t looked after? Chris says problems can range from rust, no lubrication to some serious problem-makers such as non-standard equipment being used to keep the machine running. “We also saw a case where rocks had been thrown on the equipment.”

We also saw a case where rocks had been thrown on the equipment A bearing has a bigger impact on performance than its price and size suggests. “A bearing is not an expensive item, but it is a critical component because if it fails other components fail and they are expensive to replace or repair,” Chris notes. Poor quality service is one reason for poor equipment performance, the other is low quality products. Both can increase costs. “The total cost of ownership is negatively impacted in almost every case,” Chris advises. “Bearings need to run for extended time periods. This is where SKF performs really well. We tested our materials in different conditions and SKF Explorer bearings outperformed their competitors by several orders of magnitude in poor conditions such as dust,” he confirms. “We have a strong product underpinned by excellent support. Our packages give our customers a lot more flexibility and options,” Chris concludes. SKF Chris Lubbe Tel: (011) 821-3500


VOL 69 October 2019



What Maintenance Professionals Should Know About Tribology The study of friction, wear, and lubrication – otherwise known as tribology – is of enormous practical importance to industrial maintenance professionals because it can not only optimise functionality but also help prolong the life of mechanical equipment. Ricardo De Bonis answers a few questions about the future of tribology.


ew professionals in this field invest in furthering their knowledge of recent advances, whether lowering friction or reducing wear of mating components.

What are some of the biggest challenges for tribology?

Misperceptions about the field. Many people still view tribology as traditional and old, when that simply isn’t the case.. We need to dedicate more resources to continuing education and provide better training for our engineers. I believe it’s critical that essential elements of tribological understanding lie at the core of every engineering programme.

Many people still view tribology as traditional and old, when that simply isn’t the case Another area that still challenges many people in the field of tribology is that of scale-dependence. Will the friction between two surfaces at onedimensional scale be the same as that at a different scale? For example, we know that water is a good natural lubricant and that wet surfaces slide better. But that is at the macroscale! In contrast, at the nanoscale, we see that water molecules on a surface may actually increase friction due to



their viscous effect, which becomes the dominant mechanism.

Where do you expect to see the most innovation?

I would expect transportation to be one key area. Apart from automotive, there is a lot of current development in magnetic levitation, high speed trains, aero engines, space travel, etc. But automotive is probably the biggest one as governments push to lower emissions and increase efficiency. The only way that we can still improve the efficiency of the internal combustion engine is to lower friction and wear. One way is to coat many of the mating components with low friction coatings, another is to develop better lubricants. Texturing surfaces is an additional way of optimising engine performance.

How do you think tTribology will evolve in the future?

I think that tribology will evolve the most in fields where it is still not fully understood, including:

VOL 69 October 2019

• Functionalised surfaces, including biomimetic surfaces • Better surface coatings to lower friction and wear, particularly in engines • Nanoscale tribology and the effects of scale dependence • Biotribology as we continually strive to increase the lifetime of materials in the body Until we truly recognise the importance of tribology in our lives, we won’t attribute the required resources to solve tribological problems. In an effort to provide a clear understanding of what it takes to succeed in today’s market, and in its continuous efforts to educate the workforce, the South African Institute of Tribology offers beginner and advanced Lubrication Engineering courses. Ricardo De Bonis, a past president and current SAIT member is owner of Nona Industrial.


VOL 69 October 2019




VOL 69 October 2019


All Things Bright And Sparkly Adapting one of its X-ray fluorescence (XRF) diamond sorting machines, De Beers Group Technology has created a secure and efficient sorting solution for emeralds.


ccording to De Beers Group Technology head Gordon Taylor, the company’s sorting technologies have been applied to a range of minerals apart from diamonds, and which include gemstones like rubies to lower value commodities such as manganese and coal.

Always on the look out

“We are always on the look-out for new applications for our sorting equipment, which also employ X-ray luminescence, X-ray transmission, laser, magnetics

We are always on the look-out for new applications for our sorting equipment, which also employ X-ray luminescence, X-ray transmission, laser, magnetics and ultra-violet technologies

and ultra-violet technologies,” says Gordon. “So we were excited by the opportunity to collaborate with Magnum Mining and Exploration on their emerald project in Limpopo province.” In its trial mining and processing phase, Gravelotte has been gathering data to confirm the historic grades previously recovered at the Gravelotte project. In operation for much of the 20th century, total recorded production from this area was estimated at nearly 113 million carats. It was reportedly the world’s largest emerald mine of its type in the 1960s, employing over 400 sorters. General manager of operations at Gravelotte, Wessel Marais, highlights that the traditional manual method of sorting carried an associated security risk and also led to recoveries that were not optimum. “Various mechanical sorting options are available on the market today, and Magnum approached De Beers Group Technology to determine whether their diamond sorting technology could be adapted to emerald sorting,” says Wessel.

Encouraging results

Testing of samples provided by Magnum were highly successful which led to Magnum leasing an XRF machine from De Beers Group Technology for the duration of the trial mining, and the results to date have been very encouraging. “With the machines now deployed in the operational environment, research and development work is continuing in conjunction with De Beers Group Technology to refine the process.” Gordon notes that constructive collaboration with customers is often an important element in extending the application of De Beers Group Technology’s equipment. “On this project, we were able to conduct some fundamental investigation on the properties of emeralds to guide us in developing the most effective solution,” he concludes.

Diamond X-ray sorter applied in an emerald sorting application.

De Beers Group Gordon Taylor www.debeers.com


VOL 69 October 2019



QuanƟty Surveying… …at the heart of every successful construcƟon project

Find out more… info@asaqs.co.za

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VOL 69 Thornhill October Offi 2019 ce Park • Bekker Road • Vorna Valley • Midrand


Solving Problems Faster Following years of investment and innovation, Emerson has developed a comprehensive operational analytics portfolio, delivering actionable insights to address industrial manufacturers’ most pressing operational challenges.

The amount of data created in a manufacturing facility today is unprecedented, and there’s a great deal of hype in the market place over how analytics can turn this data into performance gains,” says Peter Zornio, chief technology officer at Emerson’s Automation Solutions.

Loads of options

With more than 900 analytics software suppliers in the market today, users are overwhelmed with options. Many companies have embarked on enterprise-level “data lake” and analytics programmes, with the goal of enabling any type of application. But most of these offerings are business analytics tools for functions like finance and supply chain management.

Operational analytics with embedded domain knowledge can impact and improve performance of simple equipment, complex assets and process units, and entire production plants

Emerson’s portfolio of operational analytics focuses on the greatest source of value for industrial manufacturers, the production itself. Operational analytics with embedded domain knowledge can impact and improve performance of simple equipment, complex assets and process units, and entire production plants.

Acting quickly to solve problems faster

“We recommend addressing the high impact, known problems first,” Peter says. “By using proven models that make analytics accessible to the personnel responsible for the performance of assets, our customers can act quickly to solve problems faster. For example, our solutions can detect and address 80% of the equipment failure modes contributing to production loss in a plant in real-time.” Additionally, Emerson’s enhanced portfolio includes machine learning and artificial intelligence that can be used to identify new discoveries and deepen insight to impact business performance. These tools provide perspective previously unattainable with traditional analytics. Emerson Automation Devesh Roopnarain Email: Devesh.Roopnarain@Emerson.com Emerson.com/MEA


VOL 69 October 2019



All Ahead for Solar Power Eskom’s recent announcement of a new suggested pricing structure is widely perceived as a reactive measure by the company to compensate for its own inefficiencies, as well as support the generation of unsustainable expensive coal-driven power, while the cost of renewable power keeps coming down.

Our commentary follows reports that Eskom has proposed a significant increase to its fixed connection fees while reducing electricity usage charges. The outcome of this would be that businesses could effectively pay a flat rate for electricity, with their monthly or annual power usage having little effect on their electricity costs,” says Manie de Waal, CEO of Energy Partners Solar.

A move by the national power supplier to artificially inflate the sale of coal-generated power may very well accelerate the market adoption of renewables, especially as battery storage is starting to enter the energy mix



Understandably, this has raised concerns that grid-tied solar photovoltaic systems will become significantly less cost-effective in the future. However, that is only when compared directly to the current status quo, both in terms of Eskom’s pricing structures and technology.

Accelerating the adoption of renewables

A move by Eskom to artificially inflate the sale of coal-generated power may very well accelerate the market adoption of renewables, especially as battery storage is starting to enter the energy mix. Experience has shown time and time again that the market (and especially South Africans) can adapt

VOL 69 October 2019

quickly to ensure the continued growth of least-cost generation. One such adoption could be that customers opt for a lower NMD (Notified Maximum Demand) with the addition of battery storage into their energy mix, effectively accelerating the move to complete power independence.

Decades for proposals to be implemented

“However, before the market will need to begin adapting to Eskom’s suggested changes, these changes would actually need to be approved,” adds Manie. The new tariff proposal is in stark contrast to official policies, and will be subject to intense scrutiny by the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) before it reaches approval stage. Gaining the necessary approvals from the regulator is also a years-long process, and it is likely to take more than a decade for such a proposal to make it through to implementation. Considering solar generation is already one of the most flexible and affordable power sources in South Africa, its ability to compete with grid-based tariffs (especially expensive coal-generated power) cannot be mitigated by artificial pricing structures such as those put forward by Eskom. What is actually needed, which has been repeatedly voiced by the renewable power generation industry, is for Eskom to collaborate with the massive and willing underlying market forces to reach an equitable agreement for all parties concerned. Such a willingness to engage will effectively unleash massive untapped potential (and private capital) in South Africa to collectively engineer ourselves out of the current and future power challenges. Energy Partners Solar, Manie de Waal Tel: (021) 941-5140, Email: info@energypartners.co.za www.energypartners.co.za


VOL 69 October 2019


Split elastic coupling



VOL 69 October 2019


Making Secure Connections The Ringfeder-Henfel-Henflex HDFB split elastic couplings, available from Bearings International (BI), are ideal for the most demanding applications and aggressive environments in mining, ports, and steel factories, among others. The couplings are suitable for all low-speed, high-torque applications where minimal equipment downtime is essential.


eveloped under the most modern concepts of application engineering and advanced 3D project and Finite Element Analysis (FEA) techniques, the HDFB split elastic couplings allow efficient torque transmission through the compression of its flexible elements, which also absorb shocks and vibrations from the drive and driven machine, apart from compensating for angular, radial and axial misalignments.

Long lifespan, simple, fast, and low-cost maintenance

The couplings feature EM-GJS-450-10 ductile cast iron and polyurethane flexible elements. They can

Product manager Hilton Woest

operate within a broad temperature range of -30°C to 85°C. Advantages include a long lifespan and simple, fast, and low-cost maintenance. Due to the simple construction, installation is both fast and safe. The couplings are available in many sizes, for applications up to 600mm, and a torque capacity from 96 700Nm up to 1 147.600Nm.

The bearings can operate within a broad temperature range of -30°C to 85°C Features include radial mounting and dismounting, on-site maintenance, reduced operating costs, no need for special tools, no need for drive or driven machine displacement, alignment preservation, lubricationfree, and interchangeability, according to BI product manager, Hilton Woest. “This makes it easier for customers already using buffer roller couplings to change over to the new split coupling design with ease. They are interchangeable with most of the traditional elastic couplings on the market. With minor changes, these can replace grid and gear couplings,” he concludes. Bearings International Hilton Woest Tel: (011) 899-0000 Email: info@bearings.co.za www.bearings.co.za


VOL 69 October 2019


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nternational, Inc. obally recognized bribery business organization and provider of third isk management solutions.


VOL 69 October 2019


High security welded mesh



Gate Automation

Razor wire and more ....

What is High Security Weld Mesh HIGH Security Weld Mesh is wire fused and welded at a Horizontal distance of 76.2mm and a vertical distance of 12.7mm also known as 35B/3510 where 3 denotes 3”(distance between vertical wires), 5 denotes 0.5” (distance between horizontal wires), and B or 10 denotes gauge of wire

Salient Features • Difficult to Climb: The spaces between the Horizontal wires are too narrow for fingers to have grip • Impregnable: Extremely difficult to cut with a hand cutter as the beak of a wire cutter will not be able to penetrate the horizontal wires • Excellent Replacement option to Solid Wall as: 1. More economical than a solid wall 2. Faster to install than a solid wall 3. CCTV Camera has a clear view • Further upgrade possible with electric security system • Anti-corrosive & low maintenance


• Manufactured according to BS EN 10016-2 • Wire Sizes in accordance with BS EN 10218-2 • Tolerance on Mesh Size in accordance wiht EN 10223-7 • Tolerance on Panel Size in accordance with EN 10223-4 • Welding Strength in accordance with BS EN 1461 • Zinc Coating in accordance with EN 10245-1 • Anti Corrosion in accordance with BS En 3900 E4/F4

Tensile Strength • Wire has a tensile strenght of min 550 MPA

MARK: 083 454 6488 22

Email: mark@palifence.co.za



VOL 69 October 2019


Dealing with Wastewater the Smart Way Key plant processes within the water and wastewater operations can now be digitised, which can generate 20-40% in cost savings. This is good news, especially for an industry under pressure to both lower operating expenditure (OpEx) and manage an aging workforce.

Trends such as the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), cloud computing and ‘edge’ control are emerging as technology engines that present cost-effective options for modernising operations,” explains Jacques Squire, water and wastewater segment leader at Schneider Electric South Africa. “It is estimated in South Africa that almost 50% of existing wastewater treatment infrastructures are not functioning adequately and are in need of some form of intervention. As water systems’ physical assets age, the cost of maintenance rises exponentially, and instances of downtime increase in frequency. Maintenance is often performed in a reactive mode, only once equipment breaks down. During such instances, stress levels are high, productivity is lost and costs accelerate.

Tools such as AI and the IIoT enhance the ability of the plant to capture the knowledge of the more experienced workers so that it can be shared with the new generation of incoming workers “These plants depend heavily on a pool of experienced workers to ensure that operations are run efficiently, safely and securely, generating high qual-

ity output in a manner that adheres to regulations. Aging facilities are not the only problem. A full 38% of utility employees will be eligible to retire within the next decade. The expertise they have nurtured over the years will disappear.

Workforce considerations

“The combination of an aging workforce and aging infrastructure, along with current cost control measures, mean that these issues need to be addressed quickly. Workers should be supported with tools that enable them to make better operational decisions. Fortunately, new technology trends, such as IIoT and artificial intelligence (AI) present themselves as opportunities for the industry to reinvent itself. Proper implementation of digitised solutions can both address operational costs while tackling some key workforce evolution issues,” says Jacques. “These technologies will both enhance knowledge retention and provide more flexibility when managing a changing workforce, another crucial part of the modernisation puzzle, which requires careful consideration. Digital technologies will be key for attracting and training new workers now and into the future. Such tools also enhance the ability of the plant to capture the knowledge of the more experienced workers so that it can be shared with the new generation of incoming workers.” Schneider Electric South Africa Jacques Squire Tel: (086) 130 0222 Email: za-ccc@se.com www.se.com/za.


VOL 69 October 2019




VOL 69 October 2019


Greased for Life TLT-Turbo, a global ventilation fans and systems manufacturer, has launched a range of mechanical vapour recompression fans, with ceramic hybrid bearings that provide an exceptionally long operational lifespan. Integrating the latest ventilation technology, this fan offers numerous advantages regarding performance efficiency, minimal maintenance and high reliability.


he TLT-Turbo fan for mechanical vapour recompression (MVR) has been in development since 2012 when the first case studies were carried out. Following discussions with clients, TLT-Turbo established that a need existed for low maintenance MVR fans. This was followed by four years of research, product testing and consultations with clients. The first MVR fans were rolled out in 2016 while continual product improvement has remained a focus area for TLT-Turbo.

The hybrid ceramic bearings used in TLT-Turbo MVR fans are life time greased and can be operated for up to 10 years without requiring maintenance “MVR fans have been available on the market for some time but instead of just following the trend, We took time to ensure that we came to market with a completely new, state of the art MVR solution,” says Mario Schmidt, head of the TLT-Turbo Global Vapor Fans business segment. According to Mario, the features of the MVR fan, such as the lower maintenance requirements and

the introduction of hybrid ceramic bearings underscores their commitment to developing products in close alignment to their clients and their needs.

The key differentiator

The implementation of hybrid ceramic bearings is a key differentiator of this fan. “Conventional roller bearings do not provide the required support for operating the fan in a broad operational speed range without running into harmful resonance frequencies (under critical operation). Thanks to continuous enhancement in recent years, especially through the use of ceramic materials, more effective roller bearings are available today. The use of hybrid bearings with steel rings combined with ceramic rollers has been established in many industrial applications and in the case of the MVR fan, hybrid ceramic bearings mean significantly lower maintenance requirements and better operational performance,” Mario explains. The hybrid ceramic bearings used in TLT-Turbo MVR fans are life time greased and can be operated for up to 10 years without requiring maintenance. To enhance this benefit for clients, TLT-Turbo introduced an additional device to the fan’s design that allows for the bearing to be re-greased from the outside in order to further simplify maintenance and to increase the fan’s service life. TLT-Turbo Mario Schmidt Tel: (010) 980 0505 www.tlt-turbo.africa


VOL 69 October 2019



Smart Buildings Under Threat Almost two in ten (26.5%) computers used to control smart building automation systems were subject to some kind of malicious attack in the first half of 2019 according to an overview of smart building threats conducted by Kaspersky. This study shows that while it is unclear if such systems were deliberately targeted, they often become a destination for various generic threats. Despite not being sophisticated, many of these threats may pose significant danger to everyday smart building operations.


mart building automation systems typically consist of sensors and controllers used to monitor and automate the operation of elevators, ventilation, climate controls, electricity and water supplies, fire alarms, video surveillance, access controls and many other critical information and security systems. These systems are generally managed and controlled via generic workstations, which are often connected to the Internet.

on 20.6% of workstations and 5.9% encountered ransomware.

A successful attack against such a workstation can easily result in the failure of one or several critically important smart building systems. Based on analysis of telemetry processed by around 40 thousand randomly chosen Kaspersky security solutions, deployed at smart buildings around the world, cyberattacks that could cause such damage are a reality.

Not to be taken lightly

Smart building threats came from the internet, with 23.5% of infection attempts being web-born. Removable media, including flash sticks, external hard drives and others, were responsible in 17.6% of cases Worms, spyware and ransomware

Out of the 26.5% protected smart building systems management computers that were targeted, nearly 12% were attacked with different variants of spyware, malware aimed at stealing account credentials and other valuable information. Worms were detected



The majority of these threats came from the internet, with 23.5% of infection attempts being web-born. Removable media, including flash sticks, external hard drives and others, were responsible in 17.6% of cases; another 8.8% faced threats via email links and attachments. While these figures are relatively low in comparison to the wider threat landscape, their impact should not be underestimated. Imagine if credentials from a highly secured building are stolen by a generic piece of malware and then sold on the black market. Or a sophisticated building’s life support system is frozen because essential processes have been encrypted by yet another ransomware strain. The list of possible scenarios is endless. In order to protect a smart building from the risks of cyberattack, Kaspersky advises that all computers are protected with a reliable security solution. Regular security checks should be performed, backups made and employees trained about the consequences of plugging in third-party devices. Kaspersky Tel: 0800-448-000 Email: info@kaspersky.com www.kaspersky.co.za

VOL 69 October 2019

Based on analysis of telemetry processed by around 40 thousand randomly chosen Kaspersky security solutions, deployed at smart buildings around the world, cyberattacks that could cause such damage are a reality


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VOL 69 October 2019



Double award Condition monitoring specialists, WearCheck, scooped two awards from top international training body, Mobius, at a condition based maintenance (CBM Europe) conference in Belgium recently. The awards are for first place in the Best Training Partner EUMEA 2018/19 and the Best Student Growth Africa 2018/19. Dennis Swanepoel, WearCheck’s reliability solutions consultant and accredited Mobius trainer, was on hand to receive the trophies. Dennis was invited to attend the CBM Europe conference to conduct two full-day reliability solutions workshops – Practical Vibration Analysis and Introduction to vibration, as well as a presentation on Practical High Frequency Modulation. Mobius has earned international recognition as the training standard for reliability solutions technicians.,

Dennis Swanepoel (second from left) is WearCheck’s reliability solutions consultant, Mobius trainer and a CAT IV graduate. He proudly accepted WearCheck’s awards at the Condition Based Maintenance (CBM) conference in Belgium.

Available in 153 countries, the courses are run by WearCheck and presented either on-site or at the ABB School of Maintenance premises in Johannesburg.

Solution for machine tool industry SKF and Fanuc demonstrated an edge platform technology solution for automated anomaly detection of machine tool health at the EMO Hannover Fair. By using Fanuc’s Industrial IoT Platform, Field system and SKF’s IMX condition monitoring technology as the basis, end-users will be able to predict spindle health using vibration, temperature, speed and process data. The results are integrated into the end-user’s existing Field system dashboards for a straightforward user experience. Parameters and thresholds per machine are set and adjusted based on real, historical data, not just theoretical standards. Benchmarking real-time bearing performance, across several connected machines in the same factory setting, gives additional insights. Through SKF’s engineering expertise and knowledge of spindles, lubrication systems and sealing solutions, this can lead to improved spindle performance, increased uptime and optimized inventory management. SKF Samantha Joubert Tel: (011) 821-3602 Email: samantha.joubert@skf.com www.skf.com



VOL 69 October 2019

WearCheck, Dennis Swanepoel Tel: (031) 700-5460 Email: support@wearcheck.co.za www.wearcheck.co.za


PRESENCE BOOSTED Mineral processing specialist Multotec has appointed Istanbul-based Turbo Ltd as its new agent in Turkey, according to Bart Malan, Multotec’s international business development manager for Eurasia.

Bart Malan, international business development manager at Multotec.

Bart says that while Multotec is not a newcomer to Turkey, having supplied a range of equipment over the past 19 year, there is a renewed focus on this region with the intention to expand its product footprint significantly. “Over the years, our equipment has

been installed in the chrome, gold and coal sectors, and through the appointment of Turbo Ltd we will be able to extend our reach and include a larger range of our proven Multotec solutions to the mining and minerals processing industry in Turkey.” Multotec Tel: (011) 923-6000 Email: Marketing@multotec.com www.multotec.com


A Great Success

Africa has embraced the innovation that drives WEG products and services, with customers seeing value in constant technological improvement.

BMG’s Food & Beverage Expo, which was held recently (19 and 20 September 2019) at the BMG World distribution and engineering facility, has been voted a great success.

Siegfried Kreutzfeld, CEO of the South African based Zest WEG Group, explains that WEG is quick to introduce its new products into the African market, sometimes even before launching elsewhere in the world. “We pride ourselves on the significant investment we, as WEG, make in research and development,” Siegfried says. “About 2,6% of our net revenue is ploughed back into continuous product improvement as well as new development. This keeps us at the cutting edge of technology.” The result of this intense commitment to innovation is that 43,7% of all WEG products sold in 2018 were launched in the last five years. Another indicator is that Brazil-based WEG Group holds 174 patents that are used on its products. Significantly, this has placed WEG among the thousand most innovative companies in the world, ranked by The Global Innovation 1000 of 2014. This world ranking evaluates the total R&D investments of each company, including the strategy, purpose and success of these investments.

“Highlights of the event included presentations from guest speaker, Linda Jackson, director of Food Focus, who stressed the importance of knowing the latest standards for equipment in the food and beverage sector, to ensure food safety,” says Mark Barbour, Group Product & Sales Manager, BMG. “It is critical that equipment suppliers to the industry understand the complexity of food production environments and have a thorough understanding of the key processes necessary to achieve stringent food safety requirements, by avoiding contamination risks. “This two-day expo was the ideal forum for the BMG team to collaborate with industry leaders and to network with customers. We also focused on recent changes in legislation, which include the new regulation R638 for ‘Regulations governing general hygiene requirements for food premises, the transport of food and related matters.’ “The event concentrated on the importance of investing in the correct equipment to prevent food safety hazards; what the risks of food safety are and what food safety auditors look at when they audit equipment.” BMG, Mark Barbour, Tel: (011) 620-1611 Email: markb@bmgworld.net, www.bmgworld.net

Zest WEG Group, Tel: (011) 723-6000 Email: info@zestweg.com, www.zestweg.com

The WEG variable speed drive assembly line.

On display were BMG systems and components that assist both manufacturers and end-users to achieve compliance with new specifications and to deliver on food safety and environmental and energyefficient initiatives.


VOL 69 October 2019


WORLD-CLASS performance requires speed, agility and endurance




Planning strategic direction benchmarked to world-class standards

Development of world-class infrastructure from concept to realisation

Development of operations to best practice and world-class standards

Supply Chain Strategy

Facility Design & Development

Process & Operations Design

• Supply Chain network analysis & design • National & Regional DC strategy development • Facility Sizing and OPEX estimates • On-line fullllment • Slow vs. Fast movers network set-up • A Supply Chain that supports business strategy • Site development strategies • Technology, IOT and digitilisation strategy

• Greennelds site development

• Operations assessment and benchmarking • WMS / WCS review • WMS / WCS functional requirements • Process and operations optimisation • Long term operational development strategies • Process audit • Labour standards and incentive programs

planning • Brownnelds site development planning • Functional building requirements speciication • Technical liaison to professional / development team • Facility sizing requirements (short to long term) • Design to execution • Procurement, program and vendor management

In today’s competitive business world you need to focus on every opportunity to advance your company mission



VOL 69 October 2019

ils-ct@ils.co.za ils-jhb@ils.co.za www.ils.co.za


Sewer for the underserviced Bosch Projects has recently completed a R32 million bulk sewer infrastructure project, south of Durban, for the eThekwini Water and Sanitation Division. The company was appointed to carry out multi-disciplinary designs, implementation and construction management for the Malukazi Bulk Sewer Infrastructure Scheme. The sewer scheme includes the construction of a bulk sewer gravity mains, a sewer pumpstation, sewer rising main and communal ablution facilities, with associated water and sewer reticulation, connecting into the adjacent lower Malukazi phase 1 catchment. “Apart from the civil design and electrical and mechanical components, Bosch Projects was also responsible for the important co-ordination management of sub-specialists, including mechanical, Bosch Projects team. From left, Manditha Jamuna (crouching), behind her are ventilation, fire, geotechnical, electrical, Sibusisiwe Nxumalo, Carl Nel and Phumzile Ngcobo roads and earthing contractors,” says project manager, Manditha Jamuna, Bosch Projects. “This project, which commenced in August Bosch Projects 2016, created employment within the community and now Manditha Jamuna provides a basic level of service of sanitation and water to Tel: (031) 535 6071 E-mail: jamunam@boschprojects.co.za, www.boschprojects.co.za/ the previously underserviced community.

RELIABLE ENERGY SOLUTIONS for the entire mining sector.

Renewable Energy: Wind & Solar Electrical Construction Standby/Emergency Generator Sets

LV Motors, Drives, Softstarters & Switchgear

Electrical Infrastructure Solutions

Motor Scan Power & Distribution Transformers

Invicta Vibrator Motors

Power Generation Solutions

Overhead Lines

MV Drives, Softstarters and Switchgear

Automation Control Room

Mobile Substations MV Slipring Motors Motor Control Centres, Panels & Distribution Boards Mini Substations

Zest WEG Group is able to offer a range of standard off-the-shelf products as well as end-to-end energy solutions by leveraging best practice engineering and manufacturing capabilities. All products are engineered to facilitate a safe and reliable mine and plant with operational stability and the highest possible production levels as an objective. Reduced maintenance and ease of serviceability assist in lowering the total cost of ownership for the mine.

ZWG_mining_130mmx180mm.indd 1

E-Houses and Containerised Substations

Tel: 0861 009378



2018/11/20 04:46

VOL 69 October 2019



Lubrication-free toothed belts Igus has developed an extra-compact toothed belt axis based on its flat drylin N linear system. The new axis consists of a completely standard fitment of components and is thus easily assembled. Equipped with motor and control, the new system can carry loads of up to 20 Newtons with a translation of 60 millimetres per revolution. From the lubrication-free plain bearing and the maintenance free linear guide up to the completely ready-to-install linear robot, Igus develops solutions for the industry with its plastics products, either as a single part or as a system. With the help of its linear construction kit, the motion plastics specialist has combined its drylin N low-profile linear guide with a toothed belt and has now developed the new drylin ZLN toothed belt axis as standard. Whether in vending machines, service robotics or even in automation systems, the toothed belt system can be installed quickly and easily in the smallest of spaces. The flat drylin N linear guide ensures compact construction, which is just 27 millimetres high and 40 millimetres wide. Igus, Tel: (011) 312-1848, www.igus.co.za



VOL 69 October 2019


Getting a fix on liquid waste Today, local legislation bans all liquid waste from landfill signalling a massive shift in South African waste legislation and placing significant importance on the effective management of such waste by waste producers and the waste industry alike. The question is – is South Africa ready to manage this and what is it going to take to do so? “Over the past several years, new legislation has been developed to improve the disposal of waste to landfill, and more importantly, encourage our industry to seek alternative and sustainable solutions. One of the most recent significant developments has been the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF) placing a ban on all forms of liquid waste, as well as hazardous waste with a calorific value of >20MJ/kg from landfill disposal effective as of 23rd August 2019,” says Kate Stubbs, director business development and marketing at Interwaste. Previous regulations state that hazardous liquid waste with high calorific values >20MJ/kg – such as refinery waste, chemical processed paint waste, hydrocarbon contaminated liquids, sludges and chemical solvents ought to have been progressively banned from landfills as from August 2017. However, today all liquid wastes will be banned from landfill, as well as reactive wastes, recyclable waste oils, whole waste tyres, lamps, lead acid batteries, and waste with a calorific

A visual insight

One of the most effective ways to keep your machinery running smoothly is to keep equipment well lubricated. But to ensure your lubrication is effective, you need to monitor your lubricant and keep moisture out of the system. To do this, Lubrication Engineers (LE) South Africa suggests installing oil sight glasses and replacing the standard OEM breather cap or dust cap on your machinery with a desiccant breather. Callum Ford, national marketing manager at LE South Africa, explains that oil sight glasses give people visual insight into what is happening with their lubricant at all times, allowing them to catch potential problems early on and to address these. In the long run, this minimises downtime, ensures


value >20MJ/kg, amongst others. “To best manage these new regulations, it is central for waste producers to understand that not only is there ample room for new innovation in this space but currently, there are successful innovations already in practice that are driving legislative compliance,” continues Stubbs. Interwaste Kate Stubbs, Tel: (011) 323-7300 www.interwaste.co.za/

machinery runs optimally and reduces repair costs. “Our Xtract sight glasses take the guesswork out of fluid lubrication management,” Callum says. “They are designed to give users the ability to continuously monitor the clarity, colour, sediment and water contamination levels of their lubricants. Some models even allow you to easily remove the water by draining it right out of the system.” Lubrication Engineers Callum Ford Tel: (011) 464-1735 Email: callum@lubricationengineers.co.za

ring e t a w e d k c o l c e h t roundTHE SOUTH AFRICAN MECHANICAL ENGINEER

tel: +27 11 894 2906 email: admin@pumprental.co.za

VOL 69 October 2019



Accurate software assisted blasting Achieving precise drill and blast results is crucial to maximising mining production, efficiency and safety, which is why Micromine has taken ring planning to the next level. The company has upped the features and functionality of its new Micromine 2020 software to include a series of innovative ring design tools. The new ring design function is fully integrated into Micromine’s exploration and 3D mine design software solution. Ring drilling typically occurs in confined spaces, so it’s vital for design engineers to have an awareness about geometry, mining conditions and drilling equipment. However, the reality is that modern engineers spend more time behind computers and less time underground. “This is where our new tools come in, says Andrew Esmaili, Micromine’s product analyst. “If I was trying to describe these tools to someone in a few words I’d say: you’ve probably seen the benefit of proximity sensors on cars. Now think proximity sensors but for UG planners preparing drill plans in confined

tunnels. “Micromine’s ring design tool allows planner to define the size and shape of rig(s) being used at a mine. Once that is done, the planner can use a new utility to apply constraints that ensure that boom’s range and coverage limits are not inadvertently exceeded during the design process.’’ Micromine Andrew Esmaili Email: marketing@micromine.com, www.micromine.com

Less lubrication for these balls A new series of NSK ball screws which, among other things, achieves a service life that is around three times longer when subjected to high loads. This is of enormous benefit to machine tool builders and users. The longevity is made possible by a specially devised surface texture that promotes improved oil film formation.

constantly on an oil film, reducing wear on the ball screw, especially during slow and short strokes.

Like all mechanical components, ball screws are subject to wear. One of the constant development goals of NSK’s research is to continuously reduce friction, and thus increase service life.

NSK Govender Geraldene (011) 458-3600 Email: nsk-sa@nsk.com www.nsk.com

Before commencing development, NSK noted that typical damage patterns on the surface of ball screws could be traced back to inadequate lubrication, which leads to direct metalto-metal contact between the shaft and nut. The shafts of precision ball screws are precision ground, and their surface texture appears under a microscope as a strip. Unfortunately, oil can easily run off these micro-strips, soon leading to inadequate lubrication.

Compared with standard NSK ball screws, service life is increased by a factor of three. In addition, the new surface texture reduces break-away and stick-slip effects, even during the aforementioned slow and short movements.

On the basis of these findings, NSK developed a new surface treatment that produces a flat texture with micro-recesses. Even the smallest oil deposits can settle in these recesses and prevent inadequate lubrication, permanently and effectively. The nut thus moves



VOL 69 October 2019


Passing with flying colours The Durban branch of Sew- Eurodrive has passed an internal audit by its German parent. This means that not only does it comply with the latest standards such as ISO 9001:2015, but is on par with other group companies globally in terms of quality and internal policies and procedures. The fact that KwaZulu-Natal is home to some of the harshest operating environments in the country, from sawmills and sugar mills to ports and pulp and paper, assures clients that all products supplied adhere to stringent international standards, according to Clive O’Reilly, branch manager for KwaZulu-Natal, who is based in Prospecton, Durban. Not only is it a high-humidity climate, but there is a lot of salt and dust to contend with as well, which has a corrosive impact on equipment, especially in the sugar industry. “Therefore we assemble our gearboxes and motors in accordance with a strict specification and assembly process verified by our German parent,” Clive concludes.

Sew-Eurodrive Clive O’Reilly Tel: (011) 248-7000 www.sew-eurodrive.co.za

much more than just a pump in a


complete pumping solutions Email. info@pumptechnology.co.za


VOL 69 October 2019



On the Move

Brian Rachman

Kevin Purcell

Jacques Opperman

Goscor Group has announced that Brian Rachman will move into the role of National Operations Manager for both the Bobcat and Sany brands.

Goscor Group has announced that Kevin Purcell will assume the role of National Sales Manager, taking over the management of the sales team

Vert Energy has appointed Jacques Opperman as sales and support engineer for DEIF power management products.

Technical excellence at Pilanesburg mine The Pilanesberg Platinum Mine recently celebrated 10 years of production excellence which it attributes largely to the technical excellence delivered by its outsourced contractors. Critical to this operation is the upfront dry processing requirement which Raubex Group subsidiary, SPH Kundalila, has been providing to the mine for the last nine years. As the mine’s longest standing contractor, SPH Kundalila’s primary contract entails managing all of its primary crushing requirements. This includes crushing all ROM material from the mine before it is transported to the concentrator. “With our 260 people on site, 75% from the local Bakgatla tribe, we operate four 63 ton mobile crushing machines on the

outskirts of the pit which have a combined design capacity of 380 000tpm,” says SPH Kundalila production manager, Walter Eriksen. “To ensure our performance, we have established an on-site technical support infrastructure including a workshop crew of over 40 members. “This facility enables us to conduct preventative maintenance equipment routines as well as full services,” he concludes. SPH Kundalila Walter Eriksen Tel: (018) 787-2010 www.sphkundalila.co.za

Pilanesberg Platinum Mine recently celebrated 10 years of production excellence which it attributes largely to the technical excellence delivered by its outsourced contractors, including SPH Kundalila



VOL 69 October 2019

Invincible Valves (Pty) Ltd was established in 1982 and since has grown to a medium sized enterprise located in Knights, Germiston Invincible Valves prides itself on service excellent and flexibility by striving to enhance our customer’s bottom line. Our 6,500m² facility in Knights is made up of 4,500m² under roof being our stores and workshop. The facility is fully equipped to offer a one-stop resource for valves and ancillary equipment which we transport globally. As an approved BBBEE Level 4 supplier to all major industries within South Africa, we maintain expertise and experience across a broad spectrum of industries and applications with a wide range of products. We offer a comprehensive range of local and imported valves and accessories for the mining, petro-chemical, power generation, water, sewerage and general industries. We have agents in all major centres around the country and service all four corners of the globe. We offer an in-house rubber lining service for valves, pipes, fittings and vessels which is utilized by many of the country’s major valve manufacturers. In addition we offer complete service, repair and valve reconditioning services for all types of valves. Our Core Values: We believe in treating our customers with respect. We grow through creativity, invention and innovation. We integrate honesty, integrity and business ethics into all aspects of our business functioning. Our Mission Statement: Build long term relationships with our customers and clients, to provide exceptional customer services by pursuing business through innovation and advanced technology. Our Purpose: To be a leader in the Valve Industry by providing enhanced services, customer service and profitability. Our Vision: To provide a quality service that exceeds the expectations of our esteemed customers. Invincible Valves is a proud supplier of quality valve products and ancillary equipment backed by service excellence around the globe. It is the combination of these values that allows us to form lasting business relationships.

Invincible Valves (Pty) Ltd

If it's not INVAL®, it's not Invincible 33 Shaft Road, Knights, Germiston TEL: +27 (0) 11 822 1777 | FAX: +27 (0) 11 822 3666 EMAIL: enquiries@invalve.co.za | WEB: www.invalve.co.za


VOL 69 October 2019


UNCHAIN YOUR OPERATIONS Roller chains remain a popular choice. Yet it is worthwhile to look beyond this outdated solution. After all, there is a better alternative on the market that helps to simplify your life. Belts are a rust- and oil-free alternative that outperform roller chains, lasting up to 3 times longer and weighing up to 96% less. Discover the superior capabilities, uptime, and performance of Gates belts.



© Gates Corporation 2019 - All rights reserved.


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SA Mechanical Engineer October 2019  

SA Mechanical Engineer October 2019  

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