One of the largest silver producers in North America was experiencing excessive dust and spillage on the conveyor leading from the crusher to the surge pile, which lowered air quality, required 5-10 man-hours per day to clean, and caused unscheduled downtime from premature equipment failure. “There’s a long fall going to the secondary crusher, and that creates a huge disturbance in the material flow,” explained a plant supervisor. “We were seeing a lot of dust and spillage in that area, which meant putting personnel in close proximity to the moving conveyor for cleanup.” The operations staff also noticed belt damage occurring as a result of fugitive material.
Over a 7-day period, 5 Martin® EVO Combination Cradles were installed to absorb the impact of the falling load, along with 5 EVO Slider Cradles to stabilize the belt line. Forty feet (12.2 m) of modular chute wall replaced the old structure, with a tail box and integrated dust curtains. At the bottom of the wear liner, installers mounted 84 linear feet (25.6 m) of Martin ApronSeal™ Double Skirting. To maintain a consistent belt path, technicians then installed a Martin Belt Tracking System. A dual belt cleaner system was mounted on the face of the head pulley, with a Martin Torsion V-Plow to protect the tail pulley. Completing the upgrade was an integrated air cleaner, incorporated directly into the dust generation point.
The results were immediately apparent. “We’ve gone from an everyday battle with this conveyor to almost no clean-up at all,” said the supervisor. “Now we have a guy go down there with a broom every few days. That’s it.” The firm is currently evaluating 5 additional conveyor areas for its next upgrade, with a plan currently under development to address those locations. “We’re extremely happy with the system,” the supervisor concluded. “The installation was well done, and the guys were very professional and safety-conscious. It’s changed a nightmare into an extremely functional system that operates at a high level.”