Heyl & Patterson Blog

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Railcar Movers Keep Urea Processing Plants Pushing Forward

Posted by H&P Blog on Wed, Dec 16, 2015 @ 10:00 AM

Urea, sometimes called carbamide, is a solid organic crystalline compound that is colorless, odorless and highly water soluble.  It is formed naturally in mammals, and serves an important role in the liver as the main nitrogen-containing product that breaks down amino acids, proteins and ammonia into waste.  The kidneys scrub the urea from the blood and deposit it into the urinary tract, and it then makes up the chief solid material dissolved in urine.  Urea can also be synthesized inexpensively from abundantly available inorganic materials.  Because urea offers wide-ranging uses in many different industries, it is produced regularly and is available in large quantities for use throughout the world.

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Tags: bulk material handling equipment, railcar movers, fertilizer, railcar indexers, CUB railcar mover, train positioners

Talc Processing and Applications

Posted by H&P Blog on Wed, Dec 09, 2015 @ 09:18 AM

Talc is a metamorphic rock and the softest mineral on Earth.  It is so soft that a fingernail will scratch its surface, and geologists can recognize it by its greasy feel.  Talc is a hydrous silicate of magnesium, Mg3Si4O10(OH)2, and usually contains small quantities of nickel, iron and aluminum as impurities.  It occurs commonly in thin layers known as foliafolia, but is also found in coarsely granular, finely granular crystalline masses.  Talc appears transparent to opaque, is rarely colorless, and can be found in hues ranging from white to purple.  One form of this mineral is soapstone, or steatite, which is a larger granular form of talc that is also rich in magnesium.

 

 

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Tags: process equipment, calciners, mineral processing, rotary coolers

Drying Coal Ash to be Recycled

Posted by H&P Blog on Wed, Dec 02, 2015 @ 09:00 AM

Despite all the advances of modern technology, coal is still a major fuel source for many communities and industries. The United States and China are two major countries that still rely heavily on coal to produce electricity, as well as for industrial uses.  While steps are being taken to make coal burn cleaner and more environmentally friendly, there are still the byproducts that come with its use.  One of the most common end results is the ash it produces, which in many places is accumulating faster than it can be disposed of.  The picture to the right, courtesy of the United States Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration, shows coal ash particles at 2000X magnification.

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Tags: industrial dryers, fluid bed dryers, dewatering, coal ash

Direct Heat or Indirect Heat for Rotary Dryers

Posted by H&P Blog 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 H&P Blog 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 H&P Blog 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 H&P Blog 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 H&P Blog 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 H&P Blog 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 H&P Blog 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