ACARP ACARP ACARP ACARP
Underground

Conveyor System Maintenance and Reliability

Underground » Maintenance

Published: November 96Project Number: C3018

Get ReportAuthor: Alan Roberts | University of Newcastle, Centre for Bulk Solids & Particulate

In coal mining operations, materials handling constitutes a major component of the production costs.  Belt conveyors play a central role in the mining, processing, storage and transportation of coal. It is essential that they operate efficiently with maximum availability and with a minimum of down-time.

Conveyor reliability and availability is of paramount importance in the case of drift conveyors considering the major capital investment in long wall mining equipment.

While the technology of belt conveyors and the associated design procedures have been making significant advances, there are areas several areas associated with existing conveyors where the performance is less than desirable. This is largely due to reduced component life and inadequate maintenance management strategies.

Part of the problem may have been the fact that materials handling, of which belt conveying is a major component, has often been viewed as 'beginning where the process ends' and hence, not adding value to the product.

In view of the high cost of handling in mining operations, often more than 50% of the selling price, nothing could be further from the truth. Incremental gains in reliability and efficiency of handling operations can lead to significant reductions in costs. It is an indirect, but very positive form, of 'value adding'.

Project Objectives

The objectives of the project are summarised below:

  • Quantify the cost of conveyor downtime 
  • Identify specific problems which are leading to reduced conveyor system availability 
  • Conduct research and provide recommendations aimed at solving the problems identified in the point above 
  • Increase the knowledge of site personnel of conveyor system design and operation, and raise awareness regarding the availability of assistance with solutions.
  • Form a data base of field information against which improvements in system reliability can be measured.

Early in the program it became apparent that an effective maintenance policy is totally dependant on the availability of reliable condition monitoring equipment and procedures.

This is essential for the identification of the cause of problems, permitting corrective action to be taken and improved design procedures to be initiated. Thus a major emphasis of the project has been given to condition monitoring.

Conclusions

Belt conveyor maintenance and reliability is broad ranging, touching on many aspects of conveyor design and operation. Based on background knowledge, supported by several field studies, an overall appraisal of conveyor maintenance and reliability has been undertaken. Several problem areas requiring attention have been identified. The importance of condition monitoring has been stressed and research aimed at improved performance through better design and associated condition monitoring has been undertaken.

Overall, the theory and practice of conveyor design has been extended by incorporating the findings of the re-search. In this way, the design of conveyors for more reliable operation is continually being improved.

Project Details

This final report records the work of TUNRA over the past 3 years in investigating the cost and causes of conveyor down time.

A number of installations are analysed and important recommendations are presented as to how operators can overcome maintenance problems.

The report is divided into the following chapters:

  • Conveyor System Maintenance and Reliability
  • Measurement of Dynamic Tension Distribution
  • Idler Reliability and Bearing Seal Performance
  • Belt Condition Monitoring
  • Coal & Conveyor Belt Interaction
  • Conveyor Belt Cleaning & Carry Back Measurement
  • Drive Drum Friction Investigation
  • Coal Transfer Point Design

Underground

Health and safety, productivity and environment initiatives.

Recently Completed Projects

C28026Measuring The Height Of Fracturing Above Extracted Longwall Panels To Improve Reliability Of Groundwater Impact Predictions

Longwall mining is a mining method widely used in the Australian und...

C25059Development Of An Intrinsically Safe, Integrated Wireless Communications Network With A Distributed Array Of Geotechnical Sensors

For over 20 years, SCT Operations (SCT) have provided a range of ind...

C26051An On-Machine Bolting And Geotechnical Monitoring System

The primary objective of this project was to investigate how laser s...

Underground

Open Cut

Safety, productivity and the right to operate are priorities for open cut mine research.

Recently Completed Projects

C27046Estimation Of True Deformation Vector From Slope Radar Monitoring

Slope deformation radar monitors are now widely used in open cut coa...

C29003Wear Debris Removal From Dragline Commutators

The original aim of this project was to establish a method of removi...

C28037Local Scale Dispersion Modelling To Support ACARP Emission Factors

There remains significant concern in the industry regarding the accu...

Open Cut

Coal Preparation

Maximising throughput and yield while minimising costs and emissions.

Recently Completed Projects

C27032Coal Grain Analysis Applications Handbook

This Handbook sets out recommended practices for using coal grain an...

C26012Improved Flotation Recovery Via Controlling Froth Behaviour

There is no real-time measurement for coal flotation performance, ma...

C27012Towards Better Fine Coal Classification

It is well recognised that the efficient classification of fine coal...

Coal Preparation

Technical Market Support

Market acceptance and emphasising the advantages of Australian coals.

Recently Completed Projects

C26039Nanoporosity In Cokes: Their Origin, Control And Influence On CO2 Reactivity

This project using the outcomes of previous project C24060, examine...

C28063A Comprehensive Technical Review Of High-Efficiency Low-Emission (HELE) Pulverised Coal Combustion Technologies For Power Generation

Research and development has been undertaken worldwide to realise co...

C28064Carbon Structure Transformation During Coking Of Australian Coking Coals: Better Understanding The Coke Formation

Carbon structures of coke that are formed during the plastic layer a...

Technical Market Support

Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from the production of coal.

Recently Completed Projects

C26004CFD Modelling Of Reverse Thermal Oxidisers For VAM Abatement - CFD Modelling Of Fixed-Bed RTO Devices

The project is part of a larger multi‐phase program of study a...

C27058Technological Assessment Of A Recycle Reactor For VAM Abatement

Underground coal mining emits high volumes of methane, diluted in ve...

C27008Selective Absorption Of Methane By Ionic Liquids

The connection of a ventilation air methane (VAM) abatement plant di...

Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Low Emission Coal Use

Step-change technologies aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Recently Completed Projects

C17060BGasification Of Australian Coals

Four Australian coals were trialled in the Siemens 5 MWth pilot scale ga...

C17060AOxyfuel Technology For Carbon Capture And Storage Critical Clean Coal Technology - Interim Support

The status of oxy-fuel technology for first-generation plant is indicate...

C18007Review Of Underground Coal Gasification

This report consists of a broad review of underground coal gasification,...

Low Emission Coal Use

Mining And The Community

The relationship between mines and the local community.

Recently Completed Projects

C16027Assessing Housing And Labour Market Impacts Of Mining Developments In Bowen Basin Communities

The focus of this ACARP-funded project has been to identify a number...

C22029Understanding And Managing Cumulative Impacts Of Coal Mining And Other Land Uses In Regions With Diversified Economies

The coal industry operates in the context of competing land-uses that sh...

C23016Approval And Planning Assessment Of Black Coal Mines In NSW And Qld: A Review Of Economic Assessment Techniques

This reports on issues surrounding economic assessment and analysis ...

Mining And The Community

NERDDC

National Energy Research,Development & Demonstration Council (NERDDC) reports - pre 1992.

Recently Completed Projects

1609-C1609Self Heating of Spoil Piles from Open Cut Coal Mines

Self Heating of Spoil Piles from Open Cut Coal Mines

1301-C1301Stress Control Methods for Optimised Development...

Stress Control Methods for Optimised Development and Extraction Operations

0033-C1356Commissioned Report: Australian Thermal Coals...

Commissioned Report: Australian Thermal Coals - An Industry Handbook

NERDDC