As heart of national and international import and export operations, now also port and offshore terminals rely on automated material handling systems to rapidly and efficiently load and unload merchant ships. Of course, dynamic logistics requirements come together with critical application conditions that need to be considered when selecting conveyor components. With a wide-ranging expertise in bulk handling, Rulmeca designs and produces conveyor components which can be successfully and long-term used in such applications too.
A challenge with salt water
For the form, consistency, quantity and weight of bulk materials transported during import and export operations by sea, conveyor systems setup in port and offshore terminals share the typical critical conditions of the so-called bulk handling. However, the distinctive feature of such application compared to other ones is the marine environment they are built in and therefore the higher exposure to corrosion. Indeed, the presence of salt water and high levels of humidity are the main responsible factors for this critical and potential damaging condition for the performance and durability of conveyor systems. Although offshore plants are completely surrounded by the sea, onshore plants in ports are equally affected by the close proximity of salt water. Therefore, in both cases any single component of conveyor systems needs to be highly water and corrosion resistant to prevent premature wear and ensure high performance for a long time.
Taking into consideration the most common application conditions when designing and producing bulk material handling components, Rulmeca does not leave out marine environment. The selection of hermetically sealed motorized pulleys and rollers gives both end users and equipment manufacturer the chance of setting up a strong, safe and resistant conveyors against any aggressive conditions, including corrosive salt water. Proof of that are the many projects in the field that Rulmeca has supported with its products until today.
Heavy-duty PSV rollers
Bedeschi realized the new grain terminal for Kernel, world’s leading and Ukraine’s largest producer and exporter of agricultural products. The project in hands of this well-known centuries-old experienced international designer of bulk handling solutions presents many criticalities to face. First, the onshore grain terminal feels the corrosive effect of the close presence of sea salt water. Moreover, the working environment is very dusty and it’s exposed to potential explosion risks. Last but not least, conveyor systems have to deal with the high working loads required by the large international export operations of Kernel. To withstand these inevitable conditions and ensure an efficient and long-term running of conveyors, Rulmeca PSV rollers were a winning solution due to their combination of strengths and minimal maintenance requirements. These rollers represent the highest quality and load capacity heavy-duty conveyor rollers among those designed by Rulmeca. PSV rollers can handle heavy and large lump size bulk materials and perfectly work even in the most critical conditions due to their resistance against deposit of dust and dirt, ingress of water, high and low temperatures or strong day/night temperature variation. Finally, PSV rollers can operate in ATEX environment preventing potential explosions thanks to their 100% antistatic properties.
Anticorrosive TOP and PL rollers
Among Rulmeca leading products, TOP and PL rollers are even more suitable for marine applications. They’re polymer rollers with a special resistance to both the heavy and abrasive transported bulk materials and the strong corrosive presence of salt water and humidity. At the same time, they have an extra light weight and a low noise level which allow to reduce energy consumption and simplify mounting and maintenance operations. Rulmeca proved that its thermoplastic components are the best alternative to traditional metal rollers in such specific and critical settings like marine environment. For example, the Italian company Mec Handling chose TOP rollers to replace the old rollers of the offshore belt conveyors of GPIC Bahrain. Thus, the system gained better performance and longer serving life.