Low-Velocity Conveying System Reduces Pellet Friction

Process said to convey fewer streamers during conveying.

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The newly developed Fluidlift ecoblue from Coperion, Sewell, N.J., is billed as a quality- and efficiency-enhancing pneumatic-conveying process for pellets. Compared with conventional designs, the process reportedly generates much less dust and streamers, which improves the quality of the product and reduces waste. Its lower power consumption also allows materials suppliers and compounders to reduce costs or increase throughput. Under industrial conditions it has been shown to reduce the formation of dust and streamers by 50% to 98% while lowering pressure loss in the conveyor system and energy consumption by 17% to 35%.

Coperion presented the new process, which is suitable for both new installations and retrofitting existing systems, for the first time worldwide at NPE2018 last month. The key to significantly reducing both attrition and pressure loss—the pressure difference between product feed and product delivery—is a controlled increase in the relative humidity of the conveying gas. Coperion’s primary objective while developing Fluidlift ecoblue was to prevent any end-product damage by minimizing the amount of moisture introduced and subsequently removing it. The result of this is that the granulate can be conveyed at a very low velocity, so friction between the grains and at the wall of the pipe is substantially lower than in previous designs. Ultimately, this new process ensures a dry, almost dust-free product without any need for complex additional measures.

Coperion says Fluidlift ecoblue offers an alternative wherever attrition-sensitive products are conveyed, and the generation of dust is undesirable or might even interfere with subsequent processing of the manufactured pellets. This extends the range of applications from bulk plastics to high-performance compounds. The new process is said to be particularly advantageous when handling products for upmarket technical applications such as films, high-purity granulates, and optical components.