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Over the last 30 years, Vibrafloor has provided an innovative modular vibrating reclaim system for over 250 sites across the world, to completely empty bulk products from steel and concrete silos, hoppers, warehouses, rail cars and ships.The system utilizes the vibration generated by a low power vibrating motor, to create a wave in the flexible surface plate of each module. The wave action undermines and collapses the leading edge of cohesive and free flowing bulk products. That wave creates a progressive avalanche of the stored material, which can then be easily reclaimed, much like the erosion of a cliff at the ocean.
The Vibrafloor concept is a unique reclaim system for silos and all types of bulk storage vessels. Unlike most traditional reclaim systems for silos, which consume huge amounts of energy to drive heavy duty engineering, the Vibrafloor concept demonstrates the power and effectiveness of multiple low power modules collaborating to completely empty bulk storage of any size or shape.
Once collapsed and aerated the wave moves the product forward on the plate, assisted by gravity and the slight incline of the floor, until the module is completely clear of material. As a module or zone clears, sensors located adjacent to the module become uncovered, triggering the next module or zone to repeat the process until the bulk storage is completely empty.The progressive sequence which Vibrafloor empties a silo or bulk storage is automatic, controlled by a dedicated PLC in the electric panel, once a demand signal has been received.The Vibrafloor concept includes safety as a central feature, with the ability to completely empty bulk storage of product, without human intervention or personnel entering the silo. In the unlikely event of a motor or sensor failure, the modular construction allows the adjacent modules to clear most of the stored product from the silo, leaving only a small residue to clear by hand.
Whilst the wave action is a powerful and effective reclaim solution for silos, the wave energy is isolated from the underlying floor and silo walls within the frame of each module, by the springs and flexible membrane used in the construction.The Vibrafloor concept is therefore not only safe for personnel, but also the structural integrity of the silo and bulk storage itself.This wave action undermines and collapses the leading edge of cohesive and free flowing material through a low pressure zone, creating a progressive avalanche of the stored material, much like cliff erosion at the edge of the ocean.
Vibrafloor requires no routine maintenance other than regular visual inspection. There are no major rotating or wearing parts within the Vibrafloor system, other than the vibrator motors which are isolated from the product beneath the domed motor-covers.
Reclaiming by an active floor Vibrafloor is entirely automated. No personnel are required inside the silos.
Vibrafloor guarantees to completely empty silos, stores and ships of bulk products such as soya bean meal, wood-pellets, sugar, cereals & pulses, cotton seed, biomass and fertiliser automatically and without human intervention. Thus issues of residual product causing fires or solidifying to create maintenance problems and risks to personnel are avoided.
Vibrafloor operates on demand triggered by sensors within the silo being uncovered. Depending on the size, design and profile of the silo or store, the reclaim rate may range from a few hundred kilos to many thousands of tonnes per hour.
The PLC ON/OFF signal initiates groups of vibrators which are triggered sequentially by capacitive sensors. The system stops itself when empty by material detection. A clean-up operation is entirely controlled by an ON/OFF signal from the control room.
A clean-up operation by active floor Vibrafloor does not generate dust clouds, this limits the explosion risk of sensitive materials. Video films are currently shot inside silos in operation.
All vibrating parts of a Vibrafloor rest on a bed of coil springs, and are kept in place by a thermoplastic membrane. Therefore no significant vibration energy is transferred into the structures, which can be concrete silos, corrugated steel silos, ships, railway cars, containers etc…Vibrafloor does not transfer any damaging stress or torque to the silo structure. All but harmless residual vibration is isolated within the body of each module, avoiding the unnecessary expense of reinforcing lightweight silos and store.
The Module design complies with all ATEX Safety rules for zone 21. Personnel safety is total as clean-up by Vibrafloor requires no human intervention. Structures do not incur any damage on account of vibrations and fragile products are not degraded by the reclaiming process.
Vibrafloor consumes very little energy compared to other mechanical bulk reclaim technologies. Each vibrating motor is 690W installed capacity but only the exposed modules in the low pressure zone are triggered at one time.