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.
Heyl & Patterson Blog
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Pittsburgh, PA - Heyl & Patterson Inc., a world leader in thermal processing systems and bulk material handling, announced that it has joined the Pennsylvania Mining Export Program (PAMEX), an initiative that provides assistance to Pennsylvania-based companies to successfully penetrate the Southern African market.
A few months ago, the Heyl & Patterson blog tackled the competition of the Continuous Barge Unloader vs. the Grab Bucket Unloader, to see which machine was the best for unloading river barges. A grab bucket is a simple enough machine: a clamshell bucket is lowered onto a barge, takes a bite of bulk materials and ascends to deposit its contents into a receiving hopper. However, the Continuous Barge Unloader is far more complex. This article will examine this machine more closely to see what makes it tick.
Coal became the preferred fuel for powering American cities in the 19th century, replacing wood around 1850. Anthracite from the coal regions of Pennsylvania and West Virginia was perfect for household uses because it had high quality with few impurities, and stoves and furnaces were designed for it. The rich Appalachian anthracite fields were close to the big eastern cities and a few major rail lines such as Reading Railroad.
The first appearance of the Continuous Barge Unloader, or CBU, in the United States was in steel mill applications. Although primarily used for iron ore offloading, the machines also saw early use as coal and coke unloaders. Different styles of CBUs were applied to specific projects as determined by water level fluctuations, barge size and needed discharge capacities. The CBU offered numerous advantages over the traditionally employed clamshell or grab bucket style barge unloader.
The approval of new regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency regarding air pollution, water pollution and waste disposal could result in the retirement of 35-70 gigawatts of coal-fired power generation nationwide. Electricity rates will most certainly rise, and many believe that even if construction jobs are created in the green industry, virtually no manufacturing jobs are likely to be created from the replacement of coal. Transmission grid stability will emerge as a major issue, both because of power plant shutdowns and the intermittency of renewables.
It seems that the U.S. coal industry is getting back on track after a few turbulent years. Production is rebounding, prices are high and overseas demand remains promising. However, the industry still faces considerable challenges, ranging from dwindling domestic stockpiles to indecisive regulators. With Asia and its continually increasing demand for coal finally knocking on America's door, there is some debate over the longevity of this relationship.
Coaltrans USA once again unites the leaders in the American coal industry for the latest market commentary. How are domestic coal markets evolving? How do regulatory decisions impact the availability of capital? What infrastructure developments are needed to ensure that this route remains cost-competitive? Heyl & Patterson will be among the representatives at the 12th year of the conference to discuss the changing dynamics of the U.S. coal basins. The conference sessions are pertinent to both Heyl & Patterson's Bulk Transfer Division for Rotary Railcar Dumpers and Renneburg Division for Fluid Bed Dryers.
Among the topics to be discussed at the convention:
- An overview of the U.S. coal sector
- Coal and natural gas: In fear or in tandem?
- Developing new U.S. coal projects
- U.S. met coal in the global context
- Rapid development of met coal reserves and its impact on thermal coal
- Capital availability and government regulation
Coaltrans USA’s featured presentations will be from Paul Reagan – President, Sampling Associates International; Fred Palmer – Senior Vice President of Government Relations, Peabody Energy; John Eaves - President & Chief Operating Officer, Arch Coal; and Bob Pusateri - Executive Vice President of Energy Sales and Transportation Services, CONSOL Energy.
For more information about Heyl & Patterson's bulk material handling capabilities, click here:
Coal is handled and stored several times during its journey between the mine and the eventual consumer. About 2.5 million tons of coal are burned in U.S. power plants each day. This is equivalent to roughly 21,000 railcars in transit, so coordinating production and consumption is no easy task. Accidents, rail strikes, severe weather and disasters that take out bridges and rail lines can all disrupt deliveries for utility customers who are dependent on a reliable coal supply for their power plants.
Mining is one of Australia's most important industries, creating significant employment and greatly contributing to the Australian economy. It's also a vital source of export revenue. Australia is the world's leading exporter of coal and iron ore, and is among the leaders in nickel, zinc, aluminum, gold and uranium. Minerals make up about 35% of Australia's total exports.
As the name implies, Rotary Railcar Dumper Unloaders are used to unload certain types of railroad cars. Dumpers hold a car to a section of track and rotate the track and car together to dump out the contents. Heyl & Patterson machines feature high speed semi-automatic dumping, rotation times as fast as 35 seconds per car and a dumping rate of 10,000 tons per hour when configured in tandem. Our dumpers can be controlled by just one operator and are ideal for random car or unit train applications.