This year’s Electra Mining Africa exhibition is an opportunity for Weir Minerals Africa to showcase its wide range of quality products and integrated solutions services, applied both upstream and downstream of its traditional pump offerings.
This is according to process manager Hoosen Essack.
“Many of our longstanding pump customers are still surprised to see the width and breadth of the process equipment range that Weir Minerals has built up through acquisition and development in recent years,” says Essack.
“We have become global leaders in the comminution and classification unit operations, and our presence at Electra Mining Africa is an important part of efforts to ensure the market is fully aware of the multitude of products and process solutions we provide to the mining and related sectors.”
This article first appeared in Mining Review Africa Issue 8 2018
“We provide on-the-ground integrated solutions support for customers taking our role well beyond just product supply,” he says.
“This has driven the creation of our process department, where our experts work closely with customers on process optimisation, efficiency, maintenance, spares inventory, condition monitoring, equipment heuristics, total cost of ownership and power consumption, for example, whether on particular product installations or entire parts of the plant such as mill circuits.”
“This expertise is built up in-house as part of ongoing skills development and research programmes and equips the Weir Minerals team to take a broad view of each customer’s plant and operations enabling us to add value on operational efficiencies,” says Essack.
“This input is provided across our full range of equipment from hydrocyclones and crushers to, screening equipment and pumping systems.”
Weir Minerals Africa will have a full-sized crushing station on its exhibition stand. Measuring 7 m high, the plant will feature a Trio grizzly feeder and jaw crusher, showcasing the company’s extensive capability in comminution.
These end-to-end ore crushing installations are designed and built by Weir Minerals based on agreed specifications from the customer. Configurations include ancillary ore bins, feeders, grizzlys, crushers, conveyors and surrounding infrastructure.
Also, on display will be a Cavex 1150 mm diameter dense media hydrocyclone. Weighing nearly five tonnes, it demonstrates the extent of the Weir hydrocyclone offering.
“A leader in hydrocyclone technology in the mining strong regions of South America and Australia, the Cavex hydrocyclone is engineered to reduce turbulence throughout the unit resulting in maximum efficiency and hydraulic capacity,” Essack says.
This is due to the laminar spiral inlet geometry design which provides a natural flow path into the Cavex hydrocyclone. Its unique shape has no sharp edges or square corners and allows the feed stream to blend smoothly with rotating slurry inside the chamber.
Not ignoring the company’s leading position in pumping equipment, the stand will display a Warman MCR 450 mill circuit pump. Despite its impressive size at 2.5 m diameter this rubber lined pump which is fitted with a metal impeller is not the largest in the comprehensive range of Warman MCR pumps.
“The Warman MCR 450 pump that will be on display weighs approximately 13 t, but Weir Minerals supply much larger units. An example is the Warman MCR 760 pumps weighing 55 t and capable of more than 14 400 m3/hr flow. Several of these units are in operation on South American minerals processing plants,” says Essack.
Another significant element of the display will be the manufactured-to-order MULTIFLO pontoon fully outfitted with Warman DWU (dirty water unit) pumps, access platforms, walkways, handrails and electrics.
Essack highlights that Weir Minerals Africa’s successful application of its growing range of products is made possible by its extensive footprint of branches and service centres across Africa, manned by well trained and experienced staff. Weir Minerals Africa operates world class local manufacturing facilities in Isando and Alrode and its Heavy Bay Foundry in Port Elizabeth.
In addition to this, ongoing access to Weir Minerals’ world class global research and product development capability provides enormous value-add for customers across the African continent.
“A key aspect of our value add to customers is our proximity to their operations, which enables easy and ongoing interaction allowing us to understand their challenges first-hand and help develop relevant, robust and sustainable solutions. On this basis we really do become an integral partner to their operations,” he adds.
“With 20 fully equipped branches in Africa based in strong mining regions we can respond quickly with fit-for-purpose solutions that deliver improvements in uptime and plant performance, ultimately adding to the bottom line and profitability.
The extended downturn in commodity prices and the rising cost of mining operations are among several factors that have forced many mining companies to reduce their own on-site service capability.
Weir Minerals Africa’s skills base has allowed the company to step in and become increasingly engaged with customers as knowledge partners on all aspects of their operations.
“Ongoing research and development is an important focus for Weir Minerals with a number of Technology Groups around the world, each focusing on particular product lines,” he says.
“South Africa is the Technology Centre focused on developing screen technology; whilst the United States is the Technology Centre for comminution equipment and centrifugal pumps. With this global approach Weir Minerals constantly stays at the leading edge of technology development, ultimately benefiting our customers,” says Essack.
Weir Minerals also participates in mining industry collaborations such as the Amira (Australian Minerals Industry Research Association) International programme that facilitates scientific research and engineering developments which address common industry and product challenges.