Bluefield Coal Show preview: Part 2

THOUSANDS of vendors and attendees alike are just hours away from descending upon Bluefield, West Virginia, for the popular biennial Bluefield Coal Show. In this final preview instalment, check out more industry companies who will share the latest and greatest in mining products and services at the Brushfork Armory-Civic Center.

Donna Schmidt
Bluefield Coal Show preview: Part 2

Both the exhibition and technical session portions promise to offer something for everyone and there are many plans in the works for mixers, networking events and other opportunities to meet and talk with others from across the coal community.

See more of the industry companies ready to talk shop with visitors on the show floor.


The MultiBoss/DP submersible downhole water-level transducer is just one of the products Rel-Tek will be putting on show. The transducer replaces troublesome bubblers. It is Mine Safety and Health Administration-evaluated as intrinsically safe for hazardous gob areas.

Second, MagiKal is the only truly automatic gas sensor calibration utility. Computer controlled, it keeps a 31-day schedule, with docs and uses NIST zero and span gas.

Rel-Tek will also be showing its AirBoss/200W air-velocity transducer with solid state accuracy, even below 100 feet per minute. Directional +/- reading is available and it is classified G/H/L. There are no moving parts and it is dustproof.

The RPM-Boss precision tachometer with magnetic probe has settable ranges to 60,000 revolutions per minute, easy setup and an auto ranging display. It is perfect for fans, belt slip/sequence, motors, drives, shafts and sprockets and is classified G/H/L.

The BlueBaby/1/2/3 integrated barrier boxes include amplifiers to assure robust signals. 600-volt and 3-kilovolt ratings are available. It, too, is classified G/H/L.

Also on show will be Millennia/FT Linux software and 20-mile telemetry.

Rel-Tek will be promoting its Safety Technology Center too after a recent move across town tripled the company’s space.

Schauenburg Flexadux

Besides providing flexible ventilation, Schauenburg has expanded into rigid fiberglass and steel ducting, pumpable crib bags, dust collectors, conveyor belt dewatering systems, mine chutes, doors and other custom fabricated equipment for the mining industry.

It will be showing the GD10PM, a machine-mounted methane monitor. The monitor is designed to be intrinsically safe and uses an infrared sensor for methane detection.

The system is MSHA-approved and is suitable for both mobile and fixed installations, requires no field calibration of the infrared source, has a one-second response time, is vibration resistant and has a standard 4-20 milliamp output.

The system uses a 4-inch display. A dual sensor version of the GD10PM will be available soon with a small 2in display.

The system is also being used to monitor the methane levels in a methane bleeder using a 100% by volume sensor.

Sensidyne’s coal dust explosibility meter is a portable, handheld, easy-to-use instrument that is designed to provide a direct indication of the potential explosibility of coal and rock dust mixture. The CDEM meets the needs of both mining operators and safety inspectors when following the coal dust sample collection guidelines.

It is intended to be used by mine operators, safety officials and regulators as a screening tool to help manage daily rock dusting operations and help mitigate the explosion hazard potential by identifying inadequate rock dusting application. The instrument is based on the difference in optical reflectance between the darker coal dust and the lighter inert rock duct. The CDEM is intended to be a “go/no go” device that displays red indication for insufficient rock dust levels and a green indication when the minimum safe level of rock dust is reached.

Voith Turbo

Of specific interest to Bluefield attendees this year will be Voith Turbo’s hydrodynamic XL Profile, which increases the torque density of the coupling, enabling transmittable torque to be doubled for the same coupling diameter.

It is aimed at high powered belt conveyors with drives up to 2800 horsepower per drive.

Considered a quantum leap in hydrodynamic technology, the XL Profile enables precise control of the output torque to provide optimized starting and load sharing behavior.

In addition, Voith will exhibit its Safeset torque limiting coupling.

The Safeset coupling works differently to most other overload couplings available on the market today. By working on the principle of friction (a constant) the coupling is extremely reliable and accurate throughout its life, preventing damage to any driveline in the event of a catastrophic torque overload event, such as a tramp event or blockage, it can be reset within minutes, thus reducing costly machine downtime.


The Megator Pumps 2000 America pneumatic design was introduced to address difficult mining applications, including slurry, where competitor’s units were only lasting a short time.

The Pumps 2000 America product is the first redesign of the air operated double diaphragm principal that has been developed specifically for the mining market.

It is considered by many to be the most efficient design for this demanding application. Production models include half inch, 1in, 1.5in, 2in and 3in high volume designs and soon-to-be-released 4in and two-stage models.

The air motor is stall-free, freeze-proof and can be kept running smoothly without any lubrication. It operates with low air consumption.

The system’s material design is not only a lighter alternative but also an aid in the prevention of neck and back injuries. It resists deterioration even in low pH locations and is the first plastic pump ever made.

A fire retardant anti-static conductive plastic carrying an Atex M1 rating is also a proprietary feature of the unit, so use in more explosive situations is never an issue.

The high suction lift of Pumps 2000 America allows for more efficient usage over time and is designed to be maintenance free. The supersuction ability is due to the unit’s patented double hinged diaphragms, long stroke and patented self-cleaning slurry and ball valves. Passage of larger solids is a function of all models.

The Pumps 2000 design will reduce the amount of money spent on pumps yearly and will lower overall maintenance costs by keeping the mine dry.


Proximity detection will be one of the focus areas of Strata’s Bluefield stand.

It claims to have the only system proven to work on all machinery in a mine’s working section.

Called HazardAvert, the system detects multiple personnel in relation to all pieces of machinery in the section. It has been successfully used on continuous miners, shuttle cars, scoops, haulers and roof bolters.

Strata also has mine safety refuge alternatives. It received MSHA approval on key components for numerous refuge chamber models. Retrofits and new unit deliveries are underway to keep customers Part 7 compliant come the end of 2013.

CommTrac is Strata’s wireless communications and tracking system and is MSHA (PPL) P11-V-13 compliant. It provides two-way text communication and real-time tracking capabilities in both daily operations and in emergency situations. CommTrac is battery powered and MSHA-approved.

Strata Overcasts, built with lightweight 3D panels, surpass traditional overcast options in handling, construction and performance. Overcasts are airtight, tolerant of pressure changes and require minimal maintenance. The company also offers a selection of MSHA-approved 120 pounds per square inch ventilation seals to meet differing mining conditions requirements.

The company will also be talking about its selection of timber and fire-safe steel roof support products that provide high capacity load support, optimized shipping and handling capabilities and reduced ventilation restrictions.

La Marche

Getting equipment batteries charged is a challenge for miners and La Marche Manufacturing is offering the A75MD battery charger series.

Due to its rugged design and ability to perform reliably under severe conditions such as moisture, corrosive atmosphere and rugged handling, this battery charger series has been used extensively in pillar operations to recharge scoops, shuttle cars and other mine vehicle batteries. The A75MD battery charger uses the latest microprocessor-controlled silicon-controlled rectifier charge technology and features automatic alternating current line voltage compensation, current limiting, controlled I-E-I charging cycle and more.

The La Marche chargers can be set to return a 100% depleted battery to full capacity in eight hours. Battery heating is minimized with extremely small ripple current.

La March also offers what it says is the industry’s most comprehensive data-logging of your battery’s performance. The data-log is stored in a USB thumb-drive protected from the elements and does not require proprietary software or training to read it. Together with event recording capability, it provides an additional tool to monitor and review charging cycles.

The A75MD is designed for 100% duty operation up to 50C/122F ambient temperature in a convection cooled enclosure. It uses oversized SCR modules and heat-sinks, Class-H rated transformers and heat-shielded conformal coated circuit boards.

Becker Wholesale Mine Supply

The Varis leaky feeder system will be Becker Wholesale Mine Supply’s featured product at Bluefield. It says the Varis leaky feeder is still the most dependable and robust system for mines large and small.

The company’s partner Newtrax Technologies will also be available at Bluefield and will be providing information about the MineTrax system, an open architecture platform for tracking, texting and telemetry for all underground mining operations.

MineTrax infrastructure components include a central server, ethernet gateway, leaky feeder headend gateway, low frequency underground gateway, battery-powered wireless network infrastructure node and the post-accident network probe.

The line’s terminal devices include the MineTrax SCADA RTU, vehicle modem/tag/RTU and unattended ground sensor.

It also has OEM solutions including the MineTrax OEM mobile modem/tag module and the MineTrax OEM static modem/tag/router module.


Richwood will introduce Richwood Technical Service & Support, the newest addition to its complete conveyor accessory solutions, at the Bluefield show.

Its commitment is to help clients achieve maximum productivity in bulk material handling through long-term partnerships.

Richwood Technical Service & Support strengthens that commitment even more. The company now offers turn-key installation, routine maintenance services and monthly monitoring of Richwood products by factory-trained service professionals.

Richwood Technical Service & Support means productivity, reliability, safety, value and expertise. As a full service contractor, the company will be there to install and maintain your Richwood conveyor accessories.

The Bluefield Coal Show is on from 10am to 6pm on September 11-12 and from 9am to 2pm on September 13.


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