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.Read More
Heyl & Patterson Blog
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.Read More
Unloading railcars is usually accomplished in one of two ways: a railcar dumper turns cars upside down in order to spill their contents, or bottom dump railcars drop their contents through chutes and gates. There are obvious differences between the two methods, but also some surprising similarities. Choosing between these systems calls for a number of factors to be considered, namely capital costs, maintenance, climate, versatility and economics. Heyl & Patterson recently explored both sides of the matter in an article published in World Coal magazine's June 2015 issue, entitled "Which Unloading System?"Read More
An all-too-painful truth is that bulk material handling equipment breaks down over time, and whenever it occurs, it's almost always costly. The most common problems that lead to breakdowns are actually quite preventable. They include improper maintenance, overrunning a machine's capability, not replacing worn parts, poor electrical connections, and even operation by untrained personnel or not consulting the operator manual. Almost all mean that someone has ignored the warning signs of an impending stoppage. These problems account for most of the breakdowns seen in the field, and all are avoidable by taking some simple precautions.Read More
Even in today's "paperless" world, there continues to be a huge demand for paper. Paper is made from wood pulp, which is also used to manufacture a wide variety of products from diapers to particle board to textiles. The pulp itself is the cellulose, lignin and hemicellulose components of wood fibers, which are separated from one another through steaming, cooking or mechanical grinding processes. Most pulp is made from a mixture of sawmill residue, logs, wood chips and recycled paper, and it is interesting to note that practically all of the fibers that end up as pulp originally existed as trees.
Prior to the Civil War, cities in the Ohio and Mississippi Valleys such as Pittsburgh and St. Louis were wholly dependent upon steamboats as a means of transporting bulk materials. Even after barges entered service, they were unloaded by hand because unloading machines had not yet been developed. Productivity improved along with technology, and new processes were developed for machinery production and mechanization.
Bulk material handling equipment has evolved over many years. Some of the materials being transported have changed, such as specialized sands used in the oil and gas industry and new potential energy sources such as biomass, plus the volumes have increased and the terminals have become much more sophisticated. Even so, many of the basics in the industry have remained the same over the years.
Bitterly cold temperatures keep people indoors, but it's largely business as usual for the unloading of bulk materials. Even in the extreme cold, the work still needs to be done. As temperatures drop, materials such as coal, coke, lignite, iron ore and wood chips tend to clump together as the water moisture they contain turns to ice. In the case of coal, a load can freeze nearly solid if the haul is more than one day away from its receiving station.
Bulk cargo is a commodity that is transported unpackaged in large quantities. The main purpose of bulk material handling systems is to transfer the material as quickly and cleanly as possible as it is moved from one place to another. Loading and transporting are just two stages in the process of transferring bulk materials from the producer to the consumer. When transporting by rail, they must be unloaded from railroad cars, which is usually done with rotary dumpers or turnover dumpers, which discharge loads parallel to the rails.