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Meet our “bulk-online Leader”: Martin Engineering

MARTIN ENGINEERING – GLOBAL LEADER IN INNOVATION

Established in 1944, Martin Engineering is the leading international developer, manufacturer and supplier of innovations to make the handling of bulk materials cleaner, safer and more productive. Martin offers technologies that boost flow, reduce dust and spillage, extend component life and reduce downtime, resulting in improved operating environments and increased profitability.

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Martin Engineering: Air Cannons Control Silica Buildup from Biomass-Fueled Gas Generator

São Paulo, Brazil  –  A global leader in bulk materials handling has used innovative air cannon technology to help the world’s largest orange juice producer mitigate material buildup caused by the super-heated silica flowing from the company’s thermal generator.

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Martin Engineering: Washbox Conveyor Belt Cleaner Removes Difficult Carryback

Neponset, IL, USA – A world leader in conveyor belt cleaning solutions has introduced a secondary cleaning system that removes nearly all of the carryback left on a belt, including adhesive materials and fines lodged in surface divots and valleys. The Martin® WashboxTM Cleaning System combines water spray and secondary cleaning blades in an enclosed and self-contained unit, draining residue safely away from the work area. Operators who have installed the system have drastically reduced dust and spillage from carryback, leading to a safer workplace and longer belt life with considerably less downtime.

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Martin Engineering: New Pin Latch Belt Cleaner Simplifies Service

Neponset, IL, USA – A global leader in bulk material handling technology has announced the introduction of its new Pin LatchTM Secondary Belt Cleaner, a tungsten carbide-tipped secondary cleaner that slides in and out for service without requiring any tools. The design from Martin Engineering features a square, tabbed mainframe with segmented blades connected by a simple pin mechanism, allowing easy access and quick blade replacement by semi-skilled personnel.

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Martin Engineering Global Video

Established in 1944, Martin Engineering is the leading international developer, manufacturer and supplier of innovations to make the handling of bulk materials cleaner, safer and more productive. Martin offers technologies that boost flow, reduce dust and spillage, extend component life and reduce downtime, resulting in improved operating environments and increased profitability.

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Martin Engineering: Wear Resistant Metal Alloy Extends Equipment Life

Neponset, IL, USA  –  A global innovator of bulk handling accessories and flow aids has introduced a wear-resistant fused alloy plate that can withstand more abrasion than other protective metal linings. With a bi-metallic design, Martin® Arcoplate™ combines a smooth and dense chromium carbide-rich metal alloy face plate with a hard steel back plate to resist gouging, erosion, temperature extremes and material buildup. Installing it on surfaces exposed to abrasive conditions increases protection for longer equipment life with less frequent maintenance.

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Martin Engineering: Mexican Cement Manufacturer Addresses Conveyor Carryback

Villahermosa, Mexico – A world leader in conveyor bulk handling solutions has used its innovative belt cleaning technology to help a cement manufacturer resolve fugitive material buildup caused by a variety of alternative fuel resources (AFRs). The second largest cement producer in the country, Holcim Mexico increased the use of solid and liquid AFRs at one of its facilities, but the change resulted in spillage and carryback that caused equipment failures, cleanup and maintenance costs estimated at $67,000 per month. The solution from Martin Engineering Mexico has significantly decreased the amount of spillage, increased workplace safety and lowered the cost of operation.

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MARTIN ENGINEERING NAMES NEW COO: Robert Nogaj

Neponset, IL, USA – Robert Nogaj has been named Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Martin Engineering, a global leader in bulk material handling solutions. Mr. Nogaj will be responsible for all facets of the company’s business, including R&D, manufacturing, sales, marketing and finance. With 22 years of experience in bulk materials handling, he has previously served Martin Engineering as Vice President of Operations from 2001-2015.

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Martin Engineering Europe Version Smart Nozzle Installation

Eliminate the time and cost of cutting holes and breaking refractory to replace worn out nozzles.

The Martin® SMART™ Series Jet Nozzle offers a simple yet innovative solution to the age old problem of labor intensive nozzle replacement.

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Martin Engineering: Air Cannons Mitigate Chute Plugging at Texas Cement Plant

New Braunfels, Texas –  A global innovator of bulk material handling technologies has used high-performance air cannons to help a cement plant prevent material backup due to a clogging transfer chute. With a total production of 2.3 million tons annually, the Hunter Cement Plant in New Braunfels, Texas — owned and operated by Martin Marietta — experiences heavy rain dousing raw material on its partially covered, tower-mounted D-07 conveyor system. Wet dust and aggregate would clog the chute and cause backups on the belt, leading to spillage issues that halted production and took 6-8 hours to clear. The solution employs a series of Martin® Hurricane Air Cannons strategically placed along the chute to improve material flow, minimize unscheduled downtime and reduce clean-up.

Limestone extracted from the Hunter quarry is crushed to a size of 6-inch minus (150mm) and mixed with clay, then conveyed to a processing tower. Separate conveyors deliver iron ore and sand to the same tower and the two chutes offload 350 to 400 tons (317.5 to 362.8 metric tons) per hour onto the D-07 conveyor, mixing them together on the 42 in. (1068 mm) single belt running at 350 FPM (1.8 MPS).

Two chutes offload up to 400 tons (362.8 metric tons) per hour onto the D-07 conveyor.
Two chutes offload up to 400 tons (362.8 metric tons)
per hour onto the D-07 conveyor.

The conveyor travels approximately 300 feet (91.4 m) to an adjacent tower and offloads into a pyramid-shaped funnel, which feeds a chute 12 foot-long (3.65 m), 3 ft. by 3 ft. (.91 m) square chute with a flow control gate at the bottom. The gate either diverts material to a conveyor leading to the raw mill or to a dump truck waiting on the ground below. Operators found that wet or damp material gradually formed into a rat hole and eventually created an obstruction, which led to the material back-up.

When the material flow began to choke off, two or three workers would gather around the railing at the top of the chute and use air lances and pneumatic jackhammers fitted with 8-foot long bits to clear the obstruction.

According to a management source, “The frequent unscheduled downtime to clear the rotary feeder chute was a challenge. We approached Martin Engineering to explore the possibility of adding air cannons that could help resolve the bottleneck issue.”

Air Cannon Placement for Proper Flow

Martin technicians installed a total of five 70-liter air cannons on two levels. The 94 lb. (43 kg) tanks are suspended from the tower frame by steel cords and are fed by the plant’s existing compressed air system. They fire a shot of air at up to 120 PSI (8.27 BAR) from a pressurized tank through a fan jet nozzle with a 12-inch (305 mm) wide mouth, which spreads the stream across the surface area of the wall. To clear obstructions and assure proper material flow, the cannon has an effective area of up to 22.6 ft3 (640 L).

Martin technicians installed five 70-liter air cannons on two levels, suspended by steel cords.
Martin technicians installed five 70-liter air cannons
on two levels, suspended by steel cords.

On the upper level, two of the cannons were placed along either side of the chute to dislodge accumulation from the wall, and a third unit was installed at the top to free any material that could get trapped where the chute narrows. One floor below, a cannon is directed at a downward angle to aid material flow, whereas the lowest unit on the chute specifically addresses the easily clogged diverter gate.

All fitted with a centrally located valve design, the tanks offer a direct air path with maximum force output and low air consumption. This efficiency reduces the burden on the compressor and shortens the lag time between sequences. The central valve is a detachable component that allows a single worker to disconnect it without the need to remove the tank, for faster and easier maintenance.

The central valve design delivers a direct air path, with maximum force output and low air consumption.
The central valve design delivers a direct air path,
with maximum force output and low air consumption.

A 10-bank positive solenoid control panel is connected to the facility’s programmable logic control (PLC) software, allowing operators to control and monitor the proper firing time and sequence from a remote location. To eliminate the risk of unintentional firing due to drops in pressure, the valve requires a positive signal from the solenoid in the form of an air pulse to trigger discharge.

Result

A few months after the installation, operators report that the air cannon solution has significantly decreased the plugging issues, resulting in continuous operation with minimal unscheduled downtime. Moreover, the area around the chute is reported to need only routine cleanup and maintenance accompanying normal scheduled inspections.

“Due to our long and positive relationship, we were confident that the Martin Engineering team was going to come through,” Martin Marietta management concluded. “The equipment has worked out well, and with the team’s consistently attentive service, we are confident that this is a good solution.”

Along with hundreds of air cannons, Martin Engineering has also equipped the Hunter Cement plant with conveyor accessories and bulk handling solutions. Founded in 1944 and headquartered in Neponset, IL — with divisions on 6 continents — the equipment designer and manufacturer is a world leader in flow aids and conveyor products for a wide variety of bulk material applications, including cement, coal, rock / aggregate, biomass, grain, pharmaceuticals, food and other materials. For more information, visit or call (309) 852-2384.

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