KSB’s slurry handling success in oil sands

Alberta, Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves in the type of oil sands. Extracting and processing the oil from the sands and bedrock is a challenging course of and requires the largest slurry pump within the oil sands trade.
When it involves pumping slurry, there could be very few purposes that are more difficult than the hydro-transport of heavy-duty slurries in oil sands production. Not solely do the pumps need to cope with the highly aggressive nature of the fluid being pumped, they are additionally anticipated to operate in a number of the harshest environments on the earth.
In January 2020, GIW Industries, Inc., a KSB firm, commissioned its largest ever heavy-duty centrifugal slurry pump for operation in Canada’s oil sands, particularly the Tie Bolt Construction (TBC-92). Named after its 92 in (2337 mm) impeller, the TBC-92 is the biggest and heaviest slurry pump obtainable within the oil sands trade and the most recent in a line of powerful high-pressure pumps offered by GIW.
Slurry transportation Slurry transport covers a substantial range of industry sectors, ranging from meals and beverage to mining. What is frequent to all, is that the pumps used should be ready to transport liquids containing particles and solids of various sizes and viscosities. In mining, dredging and oil sands production, the most important problem is to accommodate high density slurry and highly abrasive grits.
It is essential that the slurry passes by way of the pump with the minimum amount of damage to the pump casing, impeller, shaft and sealing mechanism. Furthermore, the pump have to be capable of delivering high flows and capable of face up to harsh working environments.
Alberta in Canada has extensive oil reserves and these are in the form of oil sands. Extracting and processing the oil from the sands and bedrock is challenging, involving the removing of bituminous ore which is transported to a crushing plant. The crushed ore is then blended with heat water to kind a dense slurry that could be transported in the pipeline in course of extraction, the place the bitumen is separated from the sand and rock. After extraction, the remaining solids (or tailings) are sometimes transported by way of totally different pumps to settling ponds.
The processes require in depth use of slurry and water transportation pumps able to handling huge portions of liquids at excessive pressures and excessive temp- eratures. Drawing on its long experience of designing slurry pumps for mining, GIW has custom-engineered slurry pumps that combine superior supplies, hydraulics and patented mechanical designs, the latest of which is the TBC-92.
Meeting challenges Mollie Timmerman, GIW enterprise growth supervisor, explains more: “Our consumer wanted a better capacity pump which was able to 10,000–11,000 m3 per hour of output at practically 40 m of developed head and a maximum working strain of 4000 kPa. The pump additionally needed to find a way to move rocks of roughly one hundred thirty mm in diameter with a total passage dimension requirement of 10 in (or 254 mm) and deal with slurry densities in excess of 1.5 SG.
In addition, the shopper was concentrating on a maintenance interval (operational time between deliberate maintenance) of around three,000 hours. They had expressed an interest in maximising the maintenance intervals and primarily based on initial put on indications, they are currently hoping to realize round 6,000 hours between pump overhauls (i.e. 6–8 months).”
The immediate utility for the first batch of GIW’s TBC-92 pumps in Alberta is in hydro-transport service where they’re used to move bitu- minous ore from the crusher to the extraction plant. The liquid pumped is a mix of water, bitumen, sand, and huge rocks. Screens are in place to maintain these rocks to a manageable dimension for the method, however the top measurement can nonetheless typically attain up to 130 mm in diameter or bigger.
The abrasive nature of the slurry is what separates a slurry pump from other pumps used in the business. Wear and erosion are information of life, and GIW has a long time of expertise within the design of slurry pumps and the event of materials to help prolong the service life of these critical elements to match the planned maintenance cycles in the plant.
“GIW already had a pump able to the output requirement, this being the MDX-750, which has been a popular size in mill duties for almost 10 years through- out Central and South America,” explains Mollie Timmerman. ”However, the customer’s utility required a pump with higher stress capabilities and the aptitude of dealing with larger rocks so we responded with the development of the TBC-92 which provided the best resolution for maximised production.”
The TBC sequence The building fashion of GIW’s TBC pump vary options giant, ribbed plates held along with tie bolts for very high-pressure service and maximum wear performance. First developed for dredge service, then later launched into the oil sands within the 1990s, the TBC pump series has grown into a fully developed vary of pumps serving the oil sands, phosphate, dredging and exhausting rock mining industries for tailings and hydrotransport functions.
The pumps are often grouped together in booster stations to construct strain as excessive as 750 psi (5171 kPa) to account for the pipe losses encountered over such lengthy distances. The robust construction of the TBC pump is well suited to do the job, while ensuring maximum availability of the tools beneath heavily abrasive put on.
Capable of delivering stress up to 37 bar and flows of greater than 18,200m³/h and temperatures as a lot as 120o C, the TBC vary is a horizontal, end suction centrifugal pump that offers most resistance to wear. Simple to hold up, the pump’s tie-bolt design transfers stress loads away from the wear resistant white iron casing to the non- bearing side plates without the usage of heavy and unwieldy double-wall construction.
The TBC-92 combines the most effective components of earlier TBC models, including the TBC-84 oil sands tailing pump, also referred to as the Super Pump. The pump also incorporates features from GIW’s MDX product line, which is used in heavy-duty mining circuits all through the world of hard rock mining.
In whole, the TBC-92 weighs about 209,000 lbs (95,000 kg), which is roughly equal to a fully-loaded Airbus A321 aeroplane. The casing alone weighs 34,000 lbs (15,500 kg). Key options of the pump embrace a slurry diverter that dramatically will increase suction liner life by lowering particle recirculation between the impeller and the liner. The massive diameter impeller allows the pump to run at slower speeds so that put on life is enhanced. The decrease velocity also provides the pump the power to function over a wider vary of flows to be able to accommodate fluctuating circulate situations.
To make maintenance simpler, the pump is fitted with a special two-piece suction plate design which helps to reduce tool time and supply safer lifting. Customers receive pump-specific lifting gadgets to facilitate the safe removal and installation of wear comp- onents. The pump also contains a longlasting suction liner that may be adjusted while not having to shut the pump down.
New milestone The commissioning of the TBC-92 marks an essential milestone for GIW, which now has pumps in service at all operating Canadian oil sands vegetation for hydrotransport purposes. The TBC-92 has been designed to sort out heavy-duty slurry transport whereas offering a low complete cost of ownership. Minimal labour and maintenance time help to maximise manufacturing and revenue.
“This new pump incorporates the teachings learned from working within the oil sands over a few years, and options our newest hydraulic and put on applied sciences,” says Mollie Timmerman. “Because this is the heaviest TBC pump we have ever designed, explicit attention was given to maintainability, as nicely as material selection and development of the pressure-containing components.”
That GIW has established itself as a major drive in pumping solutions for the oil sands business is way from surprising given that it has been growing pumping applied sciences and put on resistant supplies in the global mining business since the Forties.
These pumps have had a substantial influence on the finest way that excavated sand, rock and bitumen are transported to the upgrader plant. By including water to the excavated materials it becomes extremely efficient to pump the slurry alongside a pipeline to the upgrader. The pipeline agitation assists in separating the bitumen from the sand as it is transported, plus there’s the additional good thing about removing using vehicles.
GIW has estimated that the worth of shifting oil sand in this means can minimize costs by US$2 a barrel, and it’s much more environmentally friendly. These pumps additionally play a serious function in transporting the coarse tailings to the tailings ponds. GIW supplies pumps used in the extraction course of and other areas of production (HVF, MDX, LSA).
Understanding slurries Understanding the nature of slurries and the way they behave when being pumped has been fundamental to the event of those merchandise. GIW has been acquiring slurry samples from clients over many years for testing hydraulics and supplies each for pumps and pipelines. Research & Development services embrace a quantity of slurry take a look at beds on the campus, together with a hydraulics laboratory that’s devoted to pump performance testing.
These actions are central to the company’s pump growth programmes. If firms are experiencing issues the GIW R&D personnel can see where the problem lies and offer recommendation for remedial action. Experience does indicate that in many instances the issue lies not with the pump nevertheless, but within the interaction between the pipeline and the pump.
เกจวัดถังแก๊ส from customers about appli- cations helps in the improvement of latest tools and pump designs. By bringing to- gether prospects and teachers from all over the world to share their expertise and analysis with in-house consultants, the huge funding in research, development and manufacturing has advanced the design of the entire GIW pump merchandise,supplies and wear-resistant parts.
The future “There is a clear pattern towards bigger pumps in mining and dredging and oil sands are no exception,” comments Leo Perry, GIW lead product manager. “The first TBC pump within the oil sands industry was the TBC-46 (46 in being the diameter of the impeller). Customers are designing their services for higher and higher manufacturing and demanding the identical of the tools that retains their manufacturing moving. While these bigger pumps demand extra power, they also permit for higher production with less downtime required for maintenance. Overall, the efficiency improves when in comparability with the identical output from a bigger amount of smaller pumps. “
In conclusion, he says: “Larger pumps go hand-in-hand with larger amenities, larger pipelines, and elevated production, all of which continue to trend larger yr after yr. Other customers and industries have additionally shown an curiosity on this measurement, and it might be no surprise at all to see more of these pumps constructed within the close to future for similar applications.”

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