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Conveyor Transfer Chutes for Dust Control

If your bulk material handling operation struggles with dust issues, the transfer chutes you're using might be contributing to the problem. At SKE Industries, we engineer transfer chutes for a variety of bulk materials such as coal, potash, ore, salt, and fly ash. Our designs prioritize durability, reliability, and safety, with a significant focus on dust control.

Generating Dust at the Transfer Chute

Dust is created when material cascades over the end of a conveyor or drops into a hopper. As it moves, the material collides with the enclosure walls, causing some particles to break up. The moving stream of material draws in air, carrying smaller particles upward and away, creating airborne dust. This dust poses serious health risks, especially in enclosed spaces, and it coats surfaces around the transfer chute and beyond.

Conveyor Transfer Chute for Dust Control
Conveyor Transfer Chute for Dust Control

Techniques for Conveyor Dust Control

Material handling operations often use dust suppression techniques like water sprays to remove particulates from the air and keep them on the conveyed material. However, these active methods are costly, may require water treatment, and leave the material wet.

Passive dust control methods aim to keep the dust contained within an enclosure and, most importantly, minimize the amount generated. This is achieved through meticulous transfer chute design.

Dust Control Through Transfer Chute Design

SKE Industries employs two passive dust control methods:

Skirts are heavy-duty rubber strips that fill the gap between the bottom of the discharge chute and the lower conveyor. Proper adjustment is crucial to minimize wear on the lower belt while keeping dust contained within the chute enclosure. Skirts are often paired with rock box style transfer chutes, which direct material onto the lower belt but can generate high levels of dust due to multiple impacts.

Hood and Spoon Transfer Chutes combine two material handling devices within a single enclosure, though some applications may need only the hood or the spoon. The hood extends past the end of the upper conveyor to direct the material stream downward, creating a more controlled flow with minimized impacts. The spoon, positioned over the lower conveyor, guides the falling material through an arc, reducing impact and aligning the material's speed and direction with the lower belt. For maximum dust control, these chutes are also fitted with skirts, though they generate less dust, resulting in less wear and longer lifespan for both the skirt and the conveyor.

Other Benefits of Hood & Spoon Transfer Chutes

The rock box design often leads to material spillage and off-center loads, causing accelerated wear on the conveyor system. Hood and spoon designs offer several advantages:

Downsides to Hood & Spoon Transfer Chutes

The complex design and construction of hood and spoon chutes can cost about 50% more than simpler rock box designs. However, many users find that the reduced material loss and maintenance costs more than compensate for the higher initial investment. In cost-sensitive applications, some savings can be achieved by using either just the hood or the spoon. Space constraints, particularly low ceilings, might limit the use of a hood, but a spoon alone can still provide substantial benefits.

Transfer Chute Design Considerations

Different materials like potash, salt, trona, ore, and coal have unique densities and flow behaviors, requiring custom-designed transfer chutes. Factors considered during design include:

Our goal is to achieve the target throughput rate while minimizing impacts and preventing blockages. We use sophisticated software applications and leverage decades of conveying experience to design effective solutions.

Count on SKE Industries to Deliver

Since the 2011, we have engineered overground and underground conveyor systems for demanding clients in challenging industries. Our experience spans from coal conveying to transfer conveyors and fly ash remediation systems. For businesses moving aggregates over extended distances, we provide durable conveyor belts, structures, and ancillary equipment. We can integrate with existing systems and offer an extensive spare parts service. Our on-site conveyor belt assessments help clients avoid breakdowns and maintain peak performance.

If you need conveyor expertise, SKE Industries is here to help.

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