Bateman pneumo-driers for Victor and Snap Lake diamond projects

IM July features Canadian diamonds and Bateman Engineering has just informed us that it is supplying pneumo-drier systems to two major De Beers diamond projects in Canada: the Snap Lake and Victor Mine recovery projects. The last phase of the installation and commissioning is currently in progress, with final, handover commissioning scheduled for July 2007 for the Snap Lake units.

The scope of the contract for both projects, awarded to Bateman Engineering by DRA, covers the design, procurement and supply and commissioning of pneumo-drier systems. At Snap Lake, Bateman Engineering is also supplying a vacuum spillage and transport system. All the equipment has been manufactured in South Africa, according to Bateman Engineering’s design.

The pneumo-driers will convey diamond-bearing ore with a throughput, for Victor, of 12 t/h and, for Snap Lake, of 4 t/h. The moisture content in the diamond feed material to both pneumo-driers is 6 to 8% with the system achieving a 2 to 4% moisture reduction in the conveyed material, when measured at the discharge of the system. The feed enters the pneumo-drier system from a de-watering screen to a feed hopper then into a vibratory tube feeder which regulates the rate at which the feed of the product enters the heating element of the pneumo-drier. The product is conveyed inside piping and is discharged into a knock out bin before being passed through the X-ray sorting machines.

Bateman pneumo-driers offer the unique feature of drying and conveying ‘wet’ material simultaneously, a significant advantage for X-ray sorting where high moistures in the feed are not ideal. In addition, since it is a closed system, handling of the product while it is being conveyed is restricted, enhancing product security and preventing contamination of either the product or the surrounds.

Bateman Engineering has installed more than 25 units since 1995, with throughputs varying between 0.5 to 20 t/h. Used predominantly in the diamond industry to handle kimberlite (diamondiferous ore), alluvial diamond ore and marine silica, the Bateman pneumo-drier has also successfully conveyed and dried other materials such as coal and salt. It is simple, robust and compact, requiring less headroom than conventional drying systems. The flexibility of the pipe routing also allows for easy retrofitting into the existing establishments.

The vacuum spillage and transport system supplied by Bateman Engineering to Snap Lake enables areas where spillages occur to be cleaned by industrial vacuum systems containing flexible hoses in order to reach around plant equipment and other difficult areas to access. The vacuum conveying system transports the recovered spilled material back into production vessels or to a point where it can be disposed of safely into a contained vessel. [email protected].