Tag Archives: Nicholas Marks

Wet Earth, BHP and Rio Tinto improve Sime Washdown Skipper sprinkler system reliability

Wet Earth has collaborated with BHP and Rio Tinto’s Western Australia iron ore operations on an improvement program for its Sime Washdown Skipper sprinkler system.

The system was originally developed in 2008 to address safety and efficiency concerns around manually hosing underneath conveyors and other hard-to-reach areas. It is used at many major mine sites throughout Australia, according to Wet Earth.

Wet Earth’s recently collaboration with the major miners identified opportunities to improve the system’s overall performance and reliability, according to the company.

Wet Earth Managing Director, Nicholas Marks, explained: “One of the design improvements identified by BHP and Rio was due to the sprinkler sitting in an inverted position during normal operation. This meant that material and dust could easily penetrate the base of the sprinkler, which reduced its reliability. As these sprinklers are frequently deployed in hard-to-reach locations, reliability is critical.”

The new design incorporates a streamlined base to the sprinkler, which allows material and dust to sit on the base without any risk of it penetrating and impacting its internal operation, according to Wet Earth. Testing by both BHP and Rio Tinto found the reliability issues caused by the material penetrating the internals of the sprinkler were now eliminated.

The Washdown Skipper features, Wet Earth says, a solid brass dust proof base; stainless steel nozzle extension; Arc adjustment of 0-360°; nozzle sizes from 10-24 mm; flows from 2-15 l/s; pressure up to 10 bar; and and is easily automated, efficient and safe.