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Equipment supplier alleviating 'pressing' need, industry response to technology positive

Integrated Pump Rental MD Lee Vine discusses the SlurrySucker. Camerawork and Editing: Darlene Creamer.

9th September 2016

By: Robyn Wilkinson

Features Reporter

  

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Industrial pumps and dredging equipment supplier Integrated Pump Rental (IPR) continues in its endeavour to make pumping solutions available to the mining industry that will provide maximum uptime and ease of use, states IPR MD Lee Vine.

The company’s key product offerings, the SlurrySucker and the SlurryBlaster, have been well received by mines throughout South Africa since their introduction last year, and have subsequently been supplied to mines in Madagascar, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Namibia and South Africa, he notes.

Vine explains that a big problem in South Africa, and Africa more generally, is that mines tend to only address the build-up of fines in their dams once the problem has reached an extreme stage – when sediment is protruding out of the dam and there is very little water retention.

“The introduction of the SlurrySucker is, thus, a key example of how we have worked to alleviate a pressing industry need.”

Designed by IPR, the SlurrySucker floating dredging-unit addresses the build-up of fines in processed water ponds, return water ponds and other water storage areas in an efficient and cost-effective manner.

Vine highlights that severely silted up ponds and reservoirs can impact on the water storage capabilities of a mine or plant, negatively affecting downstream processes. Once agitated using the SlurrySucker, the silt is pumped to the mine’s chosen destination so that the mineral value in the fines can be recovered, rather than discarded.

The SlurrySucker is available in two standard sizes: the SlurrySucker Mini, which can extract 120 m3/h of slurry – the equivalent of between 30 dry tons an hour and 40 dry tons an hour – and the SlurrySucker Maxi, which removes between 70 dry tons an hour and 80 dry tons an hour.

With IPR’s rental-based business model, the company installs and operates the unit for the mine, as well as provides a repair and maintenance service, available 24/7. This includes regular inspections and routine testing of the pumps before and during contracts.

“The beauty of renting a pump before actually buying it, is that mines can test it in their own environment and ensure that it works to their satisfaction. In addition, mines know exactly what their pump costs each month – there are no hidden or unexpected costs that could be incurred, as IPR covers the costs of wear and tear on the pump. If the pump fails during an application, we will replace it. It’s quick and efficient and there is no capital cost involved.”

Vine further notes that, as the SlurrySucker is manufactured using locally produced components, lead times are also significantly reduced in terms of complete units and requisite parts.

He also highlights that they can be custom-engineered to accommodate specific applications. “Every job is treated uniquely to best meet the client’s needs. IPR evaluates the client’s site and discusses the best possible plan for its project when providing a quote.”

The SlurrySucker can also be used on plastic-lined dams without causing any damage to the liners. “This is very important from an environmental perspective, as there is no risk of the liner being cut and the water leaking out.”

Galvanised steel is used for the construction of the unit’s framework, although it can be fabricated from stainless steel for highly corrosive applications. The units are also easily transported on a standard road trailer and can perform dredging operations without the dam having to be taken off line. The operation of the unit is electronic – eliminating the risk of oil contamination in the dam – and can be undertaken by a single person.

IPR has also developed a hydro-mining solution called the SlurryBlaster for instances where dams are fully silted and there is no water available. The SlurryBlaster is positioned around the dam and uses an external water source to blast the fines and pump them to the client’s chosen destination for mineral recovery.

The SlurryBlaster can be provided on a pontoon for use on ponds and dams, trailer- mounted or manually set up to be used on plant floors and sumps, drainage areas and other difficult-to-reach areas.

“Not all applications are the same and, for this reason, we have made the SlurryBlaster available in three main configurations – although it can be modified to suit individual customer applications. Our technical team has the necessary competency to assess the situation and propose the most effective configuration for the client,” says Vine.

Each installation comes standard, with a 37 kW feed pump with float, a 22 kW slurry pump for slurry removal, a 200 m heavy-duty layflat hose and an electric control panel.

Video Blurb:

To watch a video in which Integrated Pump Rental MD Lee Vine discusses the SlurrySucker, scan the barcode with your phone’s QR reader, or go to ‘Video Reports’ on www.miningweekly.com.

Edited by Tracy Hancock
Creamer Media Contributing Editor

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