Rock Products

FEB 2019

Rock Products is the aggregates industry's leading source for market analysis and technology solutions, delivering critical content focusing on aggregates-processing equipment; operational efficiencies; management best practices; comprehensive market

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50 • ROCK products • February 2019 Support Equipment S upport equipment is in the spotlight, and for good reason. Fine-tuning your fleet means choosing the best of all equipment, not just crushers, screeners and earth-moving equipment. While those assets are clearly key players, taking a look at things that may not be top of mind – water tanks, specialty off-highway haul trucks and rear-eject material spreaders – can be an effective way to improve productivity. Examining these aspects of equipment doesn't only make fiscal sense it can also be a determining factor in keeping an operation up and running efficiently and safely. Water Tank Technology How equipment operators haul and apply water can signifi- cantly impact an operation's bottom line. These water trucks, primarily used for dust control, are designed with several fac- tors that impact their efficiency. From the challenges of water movement in the tank to the water output technology, these factors impact uptime, maintenance, efficiency and safety. In traditional applications, round water tanks are the most common. They get the job done, but not without challenges. The tank's curved sides raise the water's center of gravity, making the tank smaller than the truck can handle and the truck less stable when navigating haul roads. To mitigate the instability, operators often avoid filling their tanks completely. This means they need to refill more frequently, contributing to added downtime and increased fuel consumption as they backtrack to the water source. Alternatively, water tanks with square corners minimize churning and often have a larger capacity by simply not rounding off the sides of the tank. They also maximize produc- tivity and operator safety due to their box-shaped structure, water baffles and water metering systems. The design also lowers the unit's overall center of gravity, enhancing stability and allowing drivers to safely fill the tank to capacity. The box-shaped structure makes it possible to haul about 20 percent more water than rounded tanks, result- ing in considerable time and cost savings. To minimize surging, some tanks feature sophisticated water-control systems that use baffling that runs from floor to ceiling as well as along the complete length and width of the tank, resulting in full compartmentalization of the water. Baffles inside the tank help minimize water from surging side-to-side and front-to-back. Almost all water tanks feature baffles, but many have large holes cut out to provide maintenance personnel access to the individual compartments. Within the outer compart- ments, some manufacturers install side-surge stabilizers along the walls to prevent water from rolling or churning. The number of compartments can vary between tanks. For instance, a 58,500-gal. tank might have 42 or more individual compartments. To offer the best level of water compartmentalization, these baffles require holes to allow water to flow freely throughout the tank, but they need to be small enough to prevent water from surging during use. To address this, some water tanks feature access doors that are about as tall as an average-sized worker to provide a more advanced solution than simply a hole near the ground in the baffle walls. These baffle doors, which technicians walk through easily, practically eliminate the need to crouch down while they maintain the tank, and the doors remain shut while the water tank is in operation, further restricting water movement Increasing Efficiency with Support Equipment Three Support Equipment Pieces are Critical to Aggregates Operation Success. By Josh Swank The box-shaped structure of some water tanks makes it possible to haul more water than rounded tanks, resulting in considerable time and cost savings.

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