FEATURE: Mobile crushing and sceening units eat into the static market
By Steve Skinner29 January 2009
Static crushing and screening plants may be traditional, but mobile solutions are taking an increasing share of the market. Steve Skinner reports on product and environmental developments within the sector and the driving forces empowering mobility.
Traditionally, static plants have led the crushing and screening business, but the evolution of mobile units and the flexibility they offer is shaping the future.
"Our perception and firm belief is that fixed plants will continue to grow because there's a demand for them to produce more and more material, but the mobile segment will grow faster," said Arvid Svensson, business development manager at Sandvik Mining and Construction.
"Investment in static plants during hard times is not so attractive, so I think this too will benefit the mobile industry," continued Mr Svensson. "Technology is developing and mobile capability is much better today than it was 15 years ago. Definitely, I would say we will see a growth of mobile primary crushers in fixed plants, as they reduce loading and hauling."
Pat Brian, global sales director at Terex Pegson, also sees growth for the mobile sector, "One dynamic that we think is important, and that underpins much of our strategy, is that we see the mobile segment getting larger in terms of equipment size and hence eating into the larger quarry and mining segment that currently operates static installations.
"We see a transition whereby ultimately there will be a 50:50 split between static and mobile plant," continued Mr Brian.
Brian Pauley, marketing manager at Terex Finlay, echoes the sentiment, "In the long term, I firmly believe that the mobile crushing and screening market will continue to grow as customers require short term solutions for smaller projects. Mobile units are also ideal for operators who need to boost the capabilities of their existing static operations.
"There's greater flexibility with tracked units, and our belief is that this flexibility will become an increasingly strong driver," said Mr Pauley.
Testament to the increasing size of mobile units is Rubble Master's new RM100 impact crusher. The company's core business is demolition recycling, yet the RM100 is considered of a size and productivity that it could feasibly work in quarrying and gravel pits.
"Our main business is in demolition and all of our products have been designed specifically for demolition type duties, but the RM100 - our largest machine to date - could also operate successfully in quarrying situations," confirmed Harald Windner, sales manager at Rubble Master.
"Regards our demolition products, we recently launched an update for our OS100 four comb cascade screen to increase throughput. Also, we are now able to run the RM100 in close circuit with the TS3600 screen to be able to produce two screened materials without oversize.
"In demolition, it's becoming increasingly important to get a high throughput with a really high quality end product," Mr Windner told iC. "The needs for quality are sometimes higher in recycling than they are in the natural aggregate sector."
Rubble Master's new RM70 and RM100 crushers employ a V-belt direct drive rather than a hydraulic drive to power the rotor. "Our direct drive brings down fuel consumption and increases efficiency," said Mr Windner.
"An operator can choose either +30% more throughput or -30% less fuel consumption from the same size engine as our competitors because of the direct drive," continued Mr Windner.
"We have also improved the quality of our impact hammers to reduce the wear and running costs," said Mr Windner. "We never stop research and development in wear parts regarding both the design and the materials used."
Wear parts across the industry are generally manufactured from white iron, manganese, tungsten carbide or steel alloy. Such is the importance of quality and performance from wear parts, Sandvik operates its own foundry to produce them.
"We have our own foundry, and as a result we've been able to develop some superb new alloys made from scrap," said Mr Svensson. "We are using the remaining manganese from discarded wear parts and worn tracks from excavators and other tracked equipment.
"With the new process we've developed, we are getting very good quality and improved performance from 100% recycled manganese," enthused Mr Svensson.
While component recycling can have a positive environmental impact, crushing and screening plants are facing ever more stringent planning regulations in order to lessen environmental impact. "Environmental concerns are a real issue," Mr Svensson told iC.
"To get a permit for a new installation these days is quite a task. Noise reduction is becoming increasingly important and plant height can also be an issue," said Mr Svensson. "Also, we now have to give greater thought to making a landscape beautiful after leaving, and perhaps most significantly we have to minimise atmospheric dust.
"Dust and noise encapsulation is very important for the future. It is not so difficult to encapsulate the crushers and conveyors and put filters on the exhausts, but the points at which you discharge from a conveyor have historically been areas susceptible to wind-blown dust.
"What we've done is to develop a telescopic chute with an intelligent sensor at the bottom end so that the chute is only ever a few centimetres above the stock pile. This way, the exposure to wind is considerably reduced and we've managed to achieve a significant reduction in dust," said Mr Svensson.
"In the US and now the rest of the world too, asbestosis has been a very big issue. I will not compare the dust from a crushing and screening plant to asbestosis - that would be like comparing food with a poison - but still, it's not healthy to inhale dust.
"I think Sandvik's made great strides in dust encapsulation and I certainly believe that dust management is going to be a key driver for the sector in the future."
In December, Metso launched its new modular Barmac V300SE vertical shaft impact (VSI) crusher. Featuring a unique mix of rotor and overall design with hi-chrome, chrome carbide overlay plate, the Barmac V3000SE VSI improves capacity, reduces operating and wear costs and improves product shape.
A single drive 185 - 260 kW electric motor produces a crusher shaft speed of between 1100 and 1800 rpm. Three rotor configurations allow operators to ‘tune' the Barmac V300SE so that it is specifically suited to varying product types.
"An open rotor and anvil configuration is best suited to large feed, low abrasion and high reduction applications," said Krish Amirthalingham, product manager for Barmac VSI impactors, "while a closed rotor and anvil configuration is designed for optimum reduction in fine feed, low abrasion situations."
"The third configuration, with closed rotor and rock-shelf option allows for greater flexibility in a single machine and the ability to handle fine abrasive feeds and produce excellent particle shape in coarse aggregate and manufactured sands," said Mr Amirthalingham.
SBM Mineral Processing put its Remax Eco and Remax Maxi into production in 2008 following previews at Bauma and the company is already promising further updated models for 2009, which it will show at the MAWEV show in Austria in March.
"We believe that recycling will continue to be topical," said Anna Maria Berger, marketing manager at SBM. "Further developments of our successful Remax series along with the installation of an optimised control system will present customers with increased output capacity, reduced energy consumption, reduced maintenance costs and increased profitability," said Ms Berger.
In November, Powerscreen launched its dual power screens to give users a choice between electric and diesel power. "The choice of an alternative energy source provides an option to avoid recent fuel price increases and addresses legislative environmental requirements," said Mr Brian.
Maskin Mekano launched two new screens in 2008 in the shape of a S1403 mobile three-decked screening station with four onboard stockpiling conveyors and also a compact LS302 screening plant.
The S1403 features Maskin Makano's innovative screenbox, which has an aggressive stroke and is almost horizontal, while hydraulic jacking legs and conveyors mean that the unit can be set-up in minutes. Electric drive, an effective three-decked STE screen and rapid swap design all lead the Swedish company to proclaim that ‘there is no longer any reason not to choose a mobile screening solution.'
The electric drive compact LS302 is equipped with an STE 2-26 double-deck screen and the aggressive stroke prevents plugging.
Again featuring Maskin Makano's almost horizontal screenbox, the LS302 is ideal for the precise division of small material and a frequency controlled feeder designed in collaboration with Skako Comessa means that the LS302 is particularly suited to handling wet and sticky material.
Austria's Hartl Powercrusher is in the process of introducing two new mobile compact crushing units, the PC1 impact crusher and the PC2 jaw crusher. Both machines had their official launch at the Germen SteinExpo show early in September last year. Both units are available with a full-length screen deck that is easily attached or removed and can be transported with the crusher.
The key to the two new machines is that they are larger than existing Powercrusher machines, with larger crusher openings resulting in greater throughput - both can process up to 250 tonnes/hour. Hartl considers that they are both suitable for recycling applications and also aggregate processing.
The PC2 features Hartl's jaw crusher, which is designed to operate in the most rugged environments. "The up-thrust toggle system produces a quattro movement in the jaw, which increases the feeding capacity of the crusher and also ensures secondary crushing at the crusher outlet," said a Powercrusher spokesman. "This guarantees a highly efficient production rate and produces more cubically shaped material than standard down-thrust toggled jaw crushers," he continued.
The pace of development in mobile equipment over the past 12 months has accelerated and more is already promised for 2009. "There are pressures facing the industry, but we've set ourselves up for the long term with focussed research and development on new products," said Terex Finlay's Brian Pauley.
"As a result, we're continually bringing new products to market and strengthening our position and reputation. We have product offerings for mining, quarrying and demolition, so we're well represented across all sectors and I can confirm that during 2009 we will bring new machines to market," said Mr Pauley.
Similarly, Terex Pegson will be launching new products in 2009. Pat Brian told iC, "2009 will represent the most ambitious new product introduction programme that we've ever undertaken in volume of new machines. Terex Pegson is going to be introducing five new crushers while Terex Powerscreen will introduce four new screens.
"They're all already in design and are due for launch between the end of the first quarter and the early part of the fourth. There are three new machines in particular that will take us into the large tracked segment," confirmed Mr Brian.
Tesab in 2009 will launch an upgrade for its 10570 jaw crusher. "Increased clearance under the jaw will give that all important output and eliminate downtime on demolition jobs," said Mr Pichler, sales and marketing director.
"Also, a hydraulically adjustable product conveyor will allow for fine adjustment. Combined with a dirt conveyor and hydraulic release as well as speed and jaw overfill sensors, the Tesab 700 jaw will suit both quarry and demolition duties," said Mr Pichler.
"Our full range of mobile impact crushers is also available in electric versions providing economic and environmental benefits," said Mr Pichler.
Also in 2009, iC's sister publication, Demolition and Recycling International, will organise a new awards evening to honour excellence and innovation in the demolition industry. The inaugural awards ceremony will take place in Amsterdam, the Netherlands on 6 November 2009. Further details and award applications can be found at khl.com/magazines/demolition-and-recycling-international.
Population growth and increased urbanisation means that aggregate consumption will continue to increase. Whether this originates from quarrying or recycling is almost irrespective, as the end result remains the same, an increase in production.
"We feel that net growth will be attainable and that mobile will continue to take market share from static," said Terex Pegson's Pat Brian. "I also think we'll see emerging markets playing a much greater part than ever before."
Put more succinctly, Arvid Svensson of Sandvik simply declares, "The future's bright!"