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SPECIALIST EQUIPMENT


For aggregate producers, high efficiency “shaped” wire screens are the way to the future TO THE WIRE F


or aggregate producers, efficient and accurate sizing of material during processing is essential to profitability. One renowned screening expert has


termed plant screening stations as the “cash box” of the operation. Square opening, woven wire screen is still the media of choice in most aggregate operations. However, carryover of prime size material can become a costly production bottleneck when excessive undersize particles fail to pass through the screen openings. Te most common method of


addressing carryover is to slightly decrease the wire gauge (diameter) being used to create more open screening area. However, in doing so, wear life declines due to abrasion if traditional round wire is used. For decades, this has been the accepted


tradeoff: increased sorting efficiency means shortened screen life. “Dealing with the tradeoff between


media throughput and wear life has been a constant battle in our industry,” says a quarry production supervisor in charge of crushing, blending, screening and load out of mostly course grained granite at a US plant producing construction aggregate. “Every rock that rides over is rock that we are not making money on, because I have to re-crush it and send it back across the screen.” Previously, when his operation started


wearing through screens, the quarry supervisor would use larger diameter wire. Instead of .250-gauge wire, he would use .312-gauge wire or heavier. “But the heavier the wire, the fewer holes per square foot, and the less open area to fall through. Basically, we were shaking rock with limited production,” explains the production supervisor.


Although conventional round wire


screen has been the industry standard for generations, the geometry of the wire itself contributes to ride over. When rock particles contact the round wire, they tend to deflect up and over the screen, lessening production. Even though many producers of wire


screen simply import semi-finished product and finish it domestically, at least one US- based manufacturer has gone to the root of the problem. Te solution, it turns out, is to engineer “shaped” wire that is designed to provide more open area in wire screen of a given diameter, enabling significantly greater flow and production with less ride over. On top of this, some of the designs actually increase wear life by thickening the screen’s vertical contact surface to offer greater abrasion resistance. As an example, one engineered woven


wire screen called Hi-Rise from Hoyt Wire Cloth, compresses and expands wire so it is taller than it is wide with flat sides. Te result of using shaped, rather than round wire, is that up to 15% more screen openings can be fit into a given area. Te


Hi-Rise from Hoyt Wire Cloth compresses and expands wire so it is taller than it is wide with flat sides


24 www.engineerlive.com


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