High-Throughput Demand Meets Frequent Changeover Requirement
This process-specific NBE bulk bag discharging project, with chain-style tubular drag conveyor, is engineered and built by NBE to withstand rigorous duty cycles and stringent process demands. Process requirements include a material infeed rate of 13 tons per hour and frequent changeovers that demand system-wide cleaning to microbiologically safe levels.
This engineered-to-application processing project requires the NBE bulk bag discharger to use integrated, dual, 6-inch bore pneumatic-actuated massage paddles. Each massage paddle moves to a vertical position of 11 degrees past vertical creating positive displacement of the material in the bulk bag. The NBE massage paddles work to condition the material while aiding material flow from the bulk bag. The NBE E3™ enclosed bag spout interface, together with the loop retracting bag hanger, automatically sense the volume of material remaining in the bulk bag. As the remaining material volume decreases, the system continually retracts the bulk bag loops which elongates the bulk bag and forms the bag to a funnel shape; the funnel shape speeds material discharge and ensures complete removal of material from the bag. The NBE E3 closed-cycle dust collection system helps prevent product contamination and fugitive dust release by capturing within its concentric-tube interface the dust generated during bag unloading. This dust is collected and re-introduced back into the process flow; reducing material waste and protecting operators and equipment. Changeover times are reduced as a result of NBE bulk bag discharger sanitary design features, including: the elimination of internal angles, corners, and dead spaces to reduce accumulation of contaminants; and angled planes, rounded-radius framework, 32 Ra sheet finish, and stand-offs to speed moisture run-off away from product contact areas. Subassembly access, removal, and replacement is engineered to be completed as a single-operator, tool-less action that reduces time and labor per event. The chain-style tubular drag conveyor minimizes product breakage and degradation while providing a dust- and air-tight material transfer method. Integrated clean-in-place capabilities are provided by an automated CIP cart which enables a complete washing and drying procedure and aids in meeting regulatory requirements for food-grade system design.
Despite bulk material process demands requiring more frequent changeovers, the total line uptime and throughput performance of this operation increased due to significant reductions in the time-per-changeover event. Process safety and product safety gains have also been realized from this NBE bulk bag discharging and conveying project. The bulk bag discharging, material conditioning, feeding, and filling operating sequence protect operators by preventing migrant material dusts from entering the process area. The enclosed design also protects process material from contamination.