KSB’s slurry handling success in oil sands

Alberta, Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves within the type of oil sands. Extracting and processing the oil from the sands and bedrock is a challenging course of and requires the most important slurry pump in the oil sands trade.
When it involves pumping slurry, there may be only a few functions which might be more challenging than the hydro-transport of industrial quality slurries in oil sands production. Not only do the pumps need to contend with the highly aggressive nature of the fluid being pumped, they’re additionally expected to function in a number of the harshest environments on the planet.
In January 2020, GIW Industries, Inc., a KSB company, 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 most important and heaviest slurry pump out there within the oil sands industry and the most recent in a line of powerful high-pressure pumps provided by GIW.
Slurry transportation Slurry transport covers a substantial vary of industry sectors, ranging from food and beverage to mining. What is widespread to all, is that the pumps used should have the flexibility to transport liquids containing particles and solids of varying sizes and viscosities. In mining, dredging and oil sands production, the biggest challenge is to accommodate excessive density slurry and extremely abrasive grits.
It is important that the slurry passes through the pump with the minimal amount of wear to the pump casing, impeller, shaft and sealing mechanism. Furthermore, the pump must be able to delivering high flows and in a place to withstand harsh operating environments.
Alberta in Canada has intensive 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 removal of bituminous ore which is transported to a crushing plant. The crushed ore is then combined with heat water to type a dense slurry that can be transported in the pipeline in the path of extraction, the place the bitumen is separated from the sand and rock. After extraction, the remaining solids (or tailings) are often transported via totally different pumps to settling ponds.
The processes require extensive use of slurry and water transportation pumps capable of handling huge quantities of liquids at high pressures and excessive temp- eratures. Drawing on its long expertise of designing slurry pumps for mining, GIW has custom-engineered slurry pumps that combine advanced supplies, hydraulics and patented mechanical designs, the newest of which is the TBC-92.
Meeting challenges Mollie Timmerman, GIW enterprise improvement supervisor, explains more: “Our shopper wanted a higher capability pump which was able to 10,000–11,000 m3 per hour of output at almost forty m of developed head and a maximum working pressure of 4000 kPa. The pump additionally wanted to find a way to cross rocks of roughly one hundred thirty mm in diameter with a complete passage measurement requirement of 10 in (or 254 mm) and deal with slurry densities in extra of 1.5 SG.
In addition, the customer was concentrating on a upkeep interval (operational time between deliberate maintenance) of around three,000 hours. เพรสเชอร์เกจnuovafima had expressed an curiosity in maximising the upkeep intervals and primarily based on preliminary put on indications, they are at present hoping to attain around 6,000 hours between pump overhauls (i.e. 6–8 months).”

The immediate application for the first batch of GIW’s TBC-92 pumps in Alberta is in hydro-transport service the place they are used to maneuver bitu- minous ore from the crusher to the extraction plant. The liquid pumped is a mixture 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 size can still usually reach as much as one hundred thirty mm in diameter or bigger.
The abrasive nature of the slurry is what separates a slurry pump from different pumps used in the industry. Wear and erosion are details of life, and GIW has a long time of experience within the design of slurry pumps and the development of supplies to help extend the service life of these important components to match the deliberate 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 measurement 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 greater strain capabilities and the aptitude of handling larger rocks so we responded with the event of the TBC-92 which offered one of the best answer for maximised manufacturing.”

The TBC collection The building type of GIW’s TBC pump range features massive, ribbed plates held together with tie bolts for very high-pressure service and most put on efficiency. First developed for dredge service, then later introduced into the oil sands within the Nineteen Nineties, the TBC pump series has grown into a totally 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 build stress as high as 750 psi (5171 kPa) to account for the pipe losses encountered over such lengthy distances. The sturdy development of the TBC pump is nicely suited to do the job, while guaranteeing maximum availability of the gear underneath closely abrasive wear.
Capable of delivering strain as a lot as 37 bar and flows of greater than 18,200m³/h and temperatures as a lot as 120o C, the TBC vary is a horizontal, finish suction centrifugal pump that gives most resistance to put on. Simple to maintain up, the pump’s tie-bolt design transfers stress masses away from the damage resistant white iron casing to the non- bearing side plates without the utilization of heavy and unwieldy double-wall building.
The TBC-92 combines one of the best components of earlier TBC fashions, together with the TBC-84 oil sands tailing pump, also known as the Super Pump. The pump additionally incorporates features from GIW’s MDX product line, which is used in heavy-duty mining circuits all through the world of exhausting rock mining.
In whole, the TBC-92 weighs about 209,000 lbs (95,000 kg), which is roughly equivalent 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 reducing particle recirculation between the impeller and the liner. The large diameter impeller permits the pump to run at slower speeds so that put on life is enhanced. The lower velocity additionally gives the pump the power to function over a wider vary of flows in order to accommodate fluctuating move circumstances.
To make upkeep simpler, the pump is fitted with a special two-piece suction plate design which helps to reduce software time and provide safer lifting. Customers receive pump-specific lifting gadgets to facilitate the protected elimination and installation of wear comp- onents. The pump also contains a longlasting suction liner that might be adjusted without needing to close the pump down.
New milestone The commissioning of the TBC-92 marks an essential milestone for GIW, which now has pumps in service in any respect working Canadian oil sands vegetation for hydrotransport functions. The TBC-92 has been designed to sort out heavy-duty slurry transport while providing a low total price of ownership. Minimal labour and upkeep time assist to maximise manufacturing and revenue.
“This new pump incorporates the lessons discovered from operating within the oil sands over a few years, and options our newest hydraulic and put on technologies,” says Mollie Timmerman. “Because that is the heaviest TBC pump we’ve ever designed, specific attention was given to maintainability, in addition to materials choice and development of the pressure-containing parts.”

That GIW has established itself as a major force in pumping solutions for the oil sands trade is way from stunning on situation that it has been growing pumping technologies and put on resistant materials in the global mining trade because the Nineteen Forties.
These pumps have had a substantial influence on the way that excavated sand, rock and bitumen are transported to the upgrader plant. By adding water to the excavated materials it turns into 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 extra benefit of eradicating the use of trucks.
GIW has estimated that the price of shifting oil sand in this means can cut costs by US$2 a barrel, and it’s far more environmentally friendly. These pumps also play a significant position in transporting the coarse tailings to the tailings ponds. GIW supplies pumps used in the extraction course of and different areas of manufacturing (HVF, MDX, LSA).
Understanding slurries Understanding the character of slurries and the way they behave when being pumped has been fundamental to the event of those products. GIW has been obtaining slurry samples from prospects over many years for testing hydraulics and supplies both for pumps and pipelines. Research & Development facilities embody a quantity of slurry check beds on the campus, along with a hydraulics laboratory that is dedicated to pump performance testing.
These activities are central to the company’s pump growth programmes. If firms are experiencing issues the GIW R&D personnel can see where the issue lies and supply advice for remedial motion. Experience does indicate that in plenty of circumstances the issue lies not with the pump however, but in the interaction between the pipeline and the pump.
Feedback from clients about appli- cations helps in the development of recent tools and pump designs. By bringing to- gether clients and lecturers from all round the world to share their experience and research with in-house specialists, the large investment in analysis, development and manufacturing has superior the design of all the GIW pump products,materials and wear-resistant parts.
The future “There is a clear trend toward bigger pumps in mining and dredging and oil sands are no exception,” comments Leo Perry, GIW lead product manager. “The first TBC pump in the oil sands business was the TBC-46 (46 in being the diameter of the impeller). Customers are designing their facilities for larger and better manufacturing and demanding the same of the tools that retains their manufacturing shifting. While these bigger pumps demand extra energy, additionally they allow for higher production with less downtime required for upkeep. Overall, the efficiency improves when in comparison with the same output from a larger amount of smaller pumps. “

In conclusion, he says: “Larger pumps go hand-in-hand with larger services, larger pipelines, and elevated production, all of which proceed to development greater yr after 12 months. Other customers and industries have also proven an curiosity in this size, and it would be no surprise at all to see more of those pumps constructed within the near future for comparable functions.”

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