Weir Minerals Africa : Pumping innovation underpins GEHO success

The technical advancement of Weir Minerals’ GEHO® positive displacement pumps has ensured they play a key function in lowering mines’ environmental footprint.
The GEHO® pump range is well-known in varied pumping applications including tailings, backfill, ore transportation and dewatering. Weir Minerals Global Product Manager for GEHO® positive displacement (PD) pumps, Erik Vlot, highlights the pumps’ ability to pump extremely viscous slurry, allowing mines to conserve water. The energy efficiency of pipeline transportation additionally helps reduce vitality prices and reduces mines’ carbon footprint.
“The foundation of GEHO pumps’ success is our ongoing attention to technical innovation and enchancment,” says Vlot. “This additionally allowed us to be pioneers within the pumping of very acidic materials at high temperatures, similar to nickel slurry at more than 200°C at a mine in Madagascar.”
With their high capability, GEHO® pumps transport bauxite or iron ore over lots of of kilometres, providing one of the price efficient and sustainable switch methods out there to the mining business. These pumps have additionally played an integral function in the success of a Weir Minerals paste resolution at Finland’s largest open pit mine. Yara’s Siilinjärvi mine makes use of GEHO® pumps to move tailings from the plant, reaching the necessary seashore slope on its tailings facility to satisfy its life-of-mine strategy.
Backfilling is a vital methodology for mining to realize safety and environmental objectives, and GEHO® pumps have been enabling this work. In a North American platinum operation, the tools pumps over a thousand litres a minute of this viscous backfill material – measuring 70% solids by weight – back into the mine’s labored out areas.
In the context of deep mines, GEHO® pumps present an efficient and reliable way of dewatering from great depths, instead of using multiple smaller pumps to switch water to surface. The highly effective GEHO® pump range can do this by pumping from the underside of a mine to the surface in only one carry – even over kilometres.
“Apart from the price effectiveness of this solution, an essential advantage is that it reduces the chance of 1 pump in a pumping chain failing, and disrupting the complete dewatering perform,” he says. “It also reduces the price and upkeep requirements of having a quantity of pumping stations at completely different ranges inside the mine.”
Secret of GEHO® pumps has also been built on their reliability, he explains. This has resulted from Weir Minerals’ ongoing analysis and growth into its pumps’ put on components. This course of relies on an in-depth understanding of the whole pumping system in which the pump operates.
“Taking into account how our pumps interact with these systems, we focus on key features of the pumps such because the diaphragm and propelling liquid system,” he says. The propelling liquid supplies the barrier between the piston and the diaphragm making certain that every one the shifting elements transfer in oil and never slurry.
He emphasises the importance of diaphragm dynamics and the need to control the volume of propelling liquid within the chamber. This is finished by way of the PLC control, to ensure that the diaphragm runs in the best position.
“Rubber is nice at bending, but when it stretches it could possibly tear,” he says. “Our aim is to increase the alternative intervals between diaphragm replacements, serving to mines to scale back each their downtime and their complete cost of ownership.”
The monitoring of GEHO® pumps’ operation is conducted via digital know-how in order that operators can stay abreast – in actual time – of the pump’s performance and condition. Weir Minerals’ digital layer for these pumps is being rolled out to customers, informing the maintenance schedules and enhancing pump availability.
Vlot notes that Weir Minerals continues to innovate with the GEHO® pump range, and is even exploring potentialities for transferring coarse ore to the floor from deep in a mine – as a more value effective choice to conventional hoisting strategies.
“Vital to all our GEHO pump options is the Weir Minerals’ global service community, making certain that wherever our pumps are operating there might be an skilled native service crew to assist them,” he concludes.
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