Heyl & Patterson Blog

Direct Heat or Indirect Heat for Rotary Dryers

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Nov 25, 2015 @ 08:30 AM

One of the most important factors in determining the type of rotary dryer that is most appropriate for a certain process is the usage of direct or indirect heat.  Rotary dryers are capable of utilizing either direct convection style heat transfer or indirect heat transfer, in which hot surfaces within the dryer provide heat by conduction and radiation.  The determination of direct or indirect drying is contingent on the properties of the material to be dried, the process conditions and the desired end product.

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Tags: industrial dryers, rotary dryers, process equipment

Wood Pellet Exports Supply Europe's Inexhaustible Need

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Nov 18, 2015 @ 09:10 AM

The European Union plans to turn heavily towards using renewable energy in order to reduce emissions by 80 percent before 2050.  They are focused on reaching this goal, not just through the use of solar and wind but also wood pellets.  In numerous European countries, the use of wood pellets to produce electricity is becoming more commonplace.  Pellets are a by-product made from the sawdust, bark, chips and other pieces of scrap wood that are generated by the processing of trees into lumber.  The pieces are milled, dried and pressed into a pellet shape, and the lignin in the wood plasticizes to form a natural glue that allows a pellet to remain in one piece.

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Tags: power generation, wagon tipplers, biomass, wood chips, railcar dumpers

Magnesium Oxide Production Through Calcining

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Nov 11, 2015 @ 09:31 AM

Magnesium oxide, commonly called magnesia, is an inorganic compound that occurs naturally in the metamorphic rock known as periclase, which can be found in some forms of marble.  Its name comes from the Magnesia region of Asia Minor, which gave rise to the word "magnet" because of the local stone's magnetic properties.  Magnesium oxide is a particularly pure white mineral that is odorless and soluble in water.  Known by the chemical formula MgO, it is formed from bonding magnesium ions in a lattice with oxygen, which gives it a crystalline structure.  It is typically processed into a fine, white powder.

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Tags: process equipment, calciners, powder & bulk solids, mineral processing

Understanding Kaolin Processing, Mining and Uses

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Nov 04, 2015 @ 08:51 AM

Kaolin was first discovered in the hills of southeastern China, and its name translates as "high ridge" as a reference to the area of the country where it is mined.  It was first mined on a large scale during the 7th century to manufacture porcelain, and still produces large quantities of the world's supply, giving it an alternate name of China clay.  Although China has an abundance of this white powdery clay material, its quality in that region of the world is lacking.  Kaolin is found around the world, but high-quality deposits that boast exceptional whiteness, viscosity and other favorable characteristics are rare.  The United Kingdom, Brazil and southeast United States each have formations of remarkable quality.

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Tags: industrial dryers, rotary dryers, calciners, powder & bulk solids, mineral processing

Grab Bucket Barge Unloaders for Efficient Inland Waterways

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Oct 28, 2015 @ 10:00 AM

Each year, nearly half a million barge loads of bulk material such as coal, grain, wood chips, crushed stone, sand and minerals travel to delivery points along our nation’s inland waterways.  River transportation is the safest and most efficient method for moving massive quantities of materials.  Ports and other terminals along the rivers utilize various types of unloading systems to quickly and economically offload the barge traffic that comes their way.  One such system for unloading barges is the grab bucket barge unloader.

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Tags: barge unloaders, bulk material handling equipment, coal handling, grab unloaders

Characteristics and Benefits of Torrefied Wood

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Oct 21, 2015 @ 09:24 AM

The daily news reverberates with discussions about the adverse global impact humans have on the environment.  Scientists study how we can lessen it, by reducing our individual carbon footprints and making the overall move to green energy sources.  Finding a clean, efficient and relatively inexpensive replacement for the world's ubiquitous use of coal in fossil fuel power plants is a massive part of that discussion.  Some companies are considering the replacement of coal with a form of processed biomass material known as torrefied wood, and there needs to be an understanding of its storage characteristics.

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Tags: torrefaction, calciners, biomass

Mica Processing: Methods, Uses and Applications

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Oct 14, 2015 @ 10:00 AM

Mica is a mineral of the silicate family, and is known to most people as the glittering gold flakes in some rocks.  It splits into thin sheets when fractured, and is found in all three types of typical rock formations. The most common is muscovite mica, also called potassium mica, which is found in both metamorphic and igneous rocks.  A black-colored variant called biotite commonly appears in igneous rocks such as granite, and also appears in metamorphic rock.  It is comparatively rare in sedimentary rocks, but where it does appear, its thin gold-like flakes are often confused with the genuine material.  Hence the term "fool's gold."

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Tags: rotary dryers, process equipment, MultiDisc thermal processor, fluid bed dryers, mineral processing

Bauxite Dryers for the Aluminum Production Process

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Oct 07, 2015 @ 09:30 AM

Bauxite is the world's primary source of aluminum, one of the most useful and versatile metals known to man.  Aluminum is used for cookware, baseball bats, chairs, aluminum foil, electronics, coins, cans, flagpoles, heat sinks and transportation.  One scholar of J.R.R. Tolkien even suggests that the fictional element mithril might actually be aluminum.  The mineral was discovered in 1821 by the French geologist Pierre Berthier, near the village of Les Baux in Provence, southern France.  French chemist Henri Sainte-Claire Deville later named the mineral after the town itself.

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Tags: industrial dryers, rotary dryers, process equipment, mineral processing

Heyl & Patterson Proudly Celebrates Manufacturing Day

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Sep 30, 2015 @ 09:00 AM

Manufacturing Day is the first Friday in October, and is a national showcase for the importance of manufacturing in the U.S. economy, giving American manufacturers the opportunity to show their products to the world.  Americans continue to create new products and unlock new technologies that grow the economy, so Manufacturing Day celebrates those who proudly stand behind their goods and services, helping to revitalize American manufacturing.  This will inspire young people to pursue careers in manufacturing and engineering, because today’s science, technology, engineering and math graduates will power the next chapter of American production and innovation.  In 2015, the event will be celebrated on Friday, October 2, and Heyl & Patterson is proud to recognize our place and our brethren in the manufacturing industry.

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Tags: Heyl & Patterson, company history

Railcar Movers -- A Key Step in Bulk Material Handling

Posted by David Phillips on Wed, Sep 23, 2015 @ 08:42 AM

Repositioning railroad cars in a rail-switching operation has always been a formidable task.  Prior to the development of specialized railcar movers, full-size locomotives were often employed to move the cars across relatively short distances.  Locomotives are very expensive and overpowered for the situation.  They often require a special rail yard design to allow them to move cars around or out of the way of connecting rail carriers, while older locomotives used specifically for this purpose may not have readily available parts.

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Tags: trade shows & conferences, railcar movers, CUB railcar mover