The mining industry is known to workout it’s pumps quite strenuously. When the price for commodities spike, it is advantageous to the stockholders. This window of opportunity is when they strive to extract whatever they can as quickly as possible. However, under extreme pressure, even the strongest pumps can undergo major damages ranging from corrosion to being crushed by heavier machinery.
The following are the most common threats to pumps in the mining industry. To protect the pumps to the fullest extent, it is better to be aware of these threats and to address them well in time.
The main cause for clogging of pumps could be suspended, gritty solids and slurry. The pump is in direct contact with water that is dirty and contains suspended solids like drilled cuttings and solids generated by underground ramp traffic. When this dirty water is mixed with the clean water from the aquifer, the resulting slimy texture can clog the pumps.
With a proper sump design, this issue can be solved easily. The water containing solids must be isolated within the sump, and the clean water must be collected at the source.
The mining industry can be brutal when it comes to corrosion. From the superheated water laden with pyrite, sand or iron, to emulsified brine phase drilling fluids, there is no shortage of sources that will lead to corrosion in mining.
The use of sacrificial anodes is preferred to increase the life expectancy of pumps. An anode of metal of much lower electrode potential such as magnesium, zinc, or aluminium can bear the brunt of the corrosion without compromising on the pump’s application.
If the pump is not kept at a safe distance from the mine traffic, there is a high risk of the pump being crushed by heavier equipment. It is ideal to keep the pump sufficiently away from the mine traffic in order to avoid this. Otherwise, you may have to halt your mining activities for a pump replacement.
Professionals have been servicing the mining industry for over 20 years. From pump hire in Perth to servicing, experts provide straightforward advice and highly valued service.
Overheating can occur in any pump application. Mining is no exception. Due to the low water level in the sump during prolonged operation and no underload protection, the pump will overheat. Accumulation of suspended solids in the cooling chamber, if concentrated enough, can also cause overheating. Hire quality electric motor rewinding services for mining pumps.
Motor failure can be caused by the pump’s power cord being cut or damaged. This is because water can pass into the copper conductors through the point of cable entry and go into the motor. There is also a risk of a short circuit in the cable.
This is majorly caused by improper handling of the pump. Hasty mining operations can damage the cord, leading to costly repairs. To keep the cable safe and intact, handle the pumps carefully.