Weir Minerals Africa : Pumping innovation underpins GEHO success

The technical advancement of Weir Minerals’ GEHO® positive displacement pumps has ensured they play a key role in decreasing mines’ environmental footprint.
The GEHO® pump range is well known in varied pumping functions including tailings, backfill, ore transportation and dewatering. Weir Minerals Global Product Manager for GEHO® constructive displacement (PD) pumps, Erik Vlot, highlights the pumps’ capacity to pump extremely viscous slurry, allowing mines to preserve water. The power effectivity of pipeline transportation also helps cut energy 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 excessive temperatures, corresponding to nickel slurry at more than 200°C at a mine in Madagascar.”
With their excessive capability, GEHO® pumps transport bauxite or iron ore over hundreds of kilometres, offering some of the cost effective and sustainable switch strategies available to the mining business. These pumps have additionally performed an integral role within 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, achieving the required seashore slope on its tailings facility to meet its life-of-mine strategy.
Backfilling is a vital technique for mining to attain security and environmental objectives, and GEHO® pumps have been enabling this work. In a North American platinum operation, the gear pumps over a thousand litres a minute of this viscous backfill materials – measuring 70% solids by weight – again into the mine’s worked out areas.
In the context of deep mines, GEHO® pumps present an efficient and dependable way of dewatering from nice depths, as an alternative of using multiple smaller pumps to switch water to floor. The highly effective GEHO® pump range can do this by pumping from the bottom of a mine to the floor in just one raise – even over kilometres.
“Apart from the cost effectiveness of this solution, an important benefit is that it reduces the chance of 1 pump in a pumping chain failing, and disrupting the entire dewatering function,” he says. “It additionally reduces the cost and upkeep requirements of getting multiple pumping stations at different ranges within the mine.”
The status of GEHO® pumps has also been constructed on their reliability, he explains. This has resulted from Weir Minerals’ ongoing research and development into its pumps’ put on elements. Covert of is predicated on an in-depth understanding of the entire pumping system during which the pump operates.
“Taking into consideration how our pumps work together with these techniques, we concentrate on key features of the pumps such because the diaphragm and propelling liquid system,” he says. The propelling liquid offers the barrier between the piston and the diaphragm making certain that every one the shifting parts transfer in oil and never slurry.
He emphasises the importance of diaphragm dynamics and the necessity to control the volume of propelling liquid in the chamber. This is completed 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 tear,” he says. “Our aim is to extend the alternative intervals between diaphragm replacements, serving to mines to reduce each their downtime and their complete cost of ownership.”
The monitoring of GEHO® pumps’ operation is carried out via digital technology so 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 clients, informing the upkeep 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 less expensive option to traditional hoisting strategies.
“Vital to all our GEHO pump solutions is the Weir Minerals’ world service community, making certain that wherever our pumps are operating there shall be an skilled native service crew to support them,” he concludes.
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