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Case Study

Homogenizing/Blending Plant Applications in South Africa with Special Reference to Gencor's Hlobane and Optimum Plants

Written by de Wet, N. edited by mhd on 28. Nov. 2023
This paper describes how an analysis of the functions objectives and decision criteria of homogenising/blending plants by South African metallurgists and engineers have led to a wide range of applications of this technology in South Africa over a relatively short timespan of 15 years with some interesting innovations practised at GENCOR's Hlobane and Optimum coal mines.

1. Introduction

1.1 Definitions/Functions

In a stockpile bulk solids are stacked to and subsequently reclaimed from a storage facility. Stockpiles link the various stages of bulk solids transportation systems to:

  • bridge interruptions in sections of the system without stopping the whole system, 
  • act as a butter between continuous and discontinuous sections of the system, 
  • collect, store and distribute bulk solids coming from or going into different flow lines, such as in the stockyard of a terminal, and 
  • homogenise, blend or proportion bulk raw materials for a metallurgical or chemical process.

In a homogenising plant raw material such as crushed run-0fmine coal is stacked onto a bed (stockpile) and subsequently reclaimed in such a way that the inherent fluctuations in respect of quality and/or size distribution are evened out. The homogenising effect is expressed as the ratio of the standard deviation of a given quality parameter before and after the homogenising plant.

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