May 11, 2016

11/05/2016: Barge unloading on the vast European river network
First published in Milling and Grain, March 2016

The vast river network in Europe, and not in the least in Germany, France, The Netherlands and Belgium, represents more than ever a very attractive way of transporting bulk goods and grains.

The pneumatic tower concept: In order to further promote fluvial transport and facilitate the unloading of the typical barge ship sizes from 500 to 4000 tonnes, VIGAN developed almost 30 years ago its pneumatic “tower” concept and has further improved it ever since.

The pneumatic tower is a powerful unloading system and fully compatible with the scope above. It is generally mounted on a fixed gantry, although mobile systems are possible, and capacities can range from 100 Tph to 600 Tph of grain.

The heart of the system is the multistage VIGAN ® designed turbine. The turbine is directly driven by a high revolution electrical motor with frequency inverter steering. Thanks to this configuration the energy consumption is kept low, recent systems have energy consumption records as low as 0.6kWh/ton grain.

The powerful vacuum created by the turbine sucks in the cargo at impressive tonnages per hour. In order to unload ships in the most versatile way, the tower consists of a horizontal and a vertical telescopic tube system.

At the near end of the vertical telescopic tube is the suction nozzle. It is an ingeniously designed coaxial tube system allowing air to come in from the outer ring above the cargo, making a turn in the cargo to the inner tube, thereby transporting the cargo through airlift into the vertical and subsequently horizontal telescopic tube.

The elbow between the vertical and horizontal tube is of the highest wearing resistance (records of more than seven million tonnes of grain with one elbow). Both the vertical and horizontal tubes are steered by electrical hoists. The boom carrying the suction tube system is mounted on a receiving bin with a powerful self-regenerating filter: no dust emissions possible.

To maximize reach when unloading the hatches on the barge the receiving bin is mounted on a slewing ring. The boom can be elevated by an ultra-safe hydraulic jack: no risk of “breaking”. By gravity the grain is finally transported through the air-lock system into a conveyor system, ready to be stored or processed directly by the customer.

Read the full article in Milling and Grain HERE.      

The Global Miller
This blog is maintained by The Global Miller staff and is supported by the magazine GFMT
which is published by Perendale Publishers Limited.

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