Metal fatigue through wear and abrasion costs the mining and ore-processing industry an estimated 2.4 trillion dollars (US) per year, according to NACE International*. This is a primary cause of both planned and unplanned asset downtime.
Active corrosion prevention methods have been shown to reduce associated costs by up to 35%. Historically, this has been a challenge but today's advances in technology now bring us relatively simple methods to address the impact of various abrasive media.
Properly specified protective coatings, in particular ARC Solutions, are proven to decrease damage caused by abrasion, corrosion and impact, therefore improving plant productivity.
The Maintenance Challenge
The harsh mining environment subjects assets to a variety of constant stress. Depending on the machinery, these can be one or more of the following:
Gouging: Deep furrows and grooves are cut into a metal surface. Drag line buckets, excavators and crushers are particularly affected. This leads to reduced efficiency and associated increased costs in labour and equipment expense.
Grinding: Micro fractures are caused when an abrasive surface is crushed between two opposing faces, causing furrows and micro cuts in the metal surface.
This occurs in machinery such as crushers and grinding mills. As the metal wears, the yield and production output declines.
Low-stress scratching: When abrasive matter, such as slurry, moves across a metal surface, the particles within it cause micro cuts and grooves. Typical assets affected include slurry pumps, chutes, agitators and cyclones. Again, this results in a reduction in yield and production.
Chemical attack: Electrochemical corrosion is an issue for gas handling fans and ducting, structural steel, secondary containment, drainage sumps and trenches. This causes damage to the integrity of the metal and can result in leaks. Not only can this lead to environmental fines, associated replacement costs can severely damage an operation's base-line profits.
The Solution: Protective coatings to reduce corrosion and extend lifespan
The application of a protective layer to either new or gouged metals is a proven method by which the life of mining equipment can be dramatically extended. A range of coatings are produced that allow both new and worn metals to be treated. These have been proven to block and slow the corrosion/erosion cycle.
The particular coating grades are produced as paste rebuilding and liquid resurfacing elements that can effectively refurbish metal structures and equipment to a near-new condition. Not only does this extend asset longevity but costs a fraction of a like-for-like replacement.
The most advanced of this are the range of ARC Solutions, each specifically designed to suit a variety of mining applications.
The Benefits of using ARC Solutions to Protect Metal Equipment and Assets
The series of industrial coating ARC Solutions has been created to address the four distinct erosion/corrosion aspects: gouging, grinding, low-stress scratching and chemical attack.
Through a strategic assessment of the assets themselves, current maintenance practices and exposure conditions, it's possible to easily determine the type of protective coating that will keep them working reliably and efficiently for an amount of time that far exceeds that of untreated machinery.
The advanced technologies utilised to produce the range of ARC solutions include:
- Reinforced epoxies
The advances have led to ease of use and increased affordability of such pro-active based best practices. Asset owners who've taken advantage are benefiting from real-time reliability and cost savings that amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars per annum.
The Range of ARC Solutions
The following is a sample range of ARC solutions to protect mining assets:
ARC SD4i: High abrasion resistant coating for slurry tanks and pipes, pumps and fans
ARC 858: Abrasion-resistant rebuilding coating for pump casings, tanks and vessels, fans and blades
ARC BX1: Impact-resistant and severe abrasive wear-resistant epoxy composite coating for hoppers and chutes, pulveriser exhausters and slurry pump cutwaters
ARC MX1: Coarse particle, extreme sliding wear and impact coating for pulverisers, conveyer screws, dredge and slurry pumps
Chesterton are world-leaders in the provision of such cutting-edge technologies. To find out more about ARC Solutions and the many advantages they bring to corrosion protection, visit https://arcindustrialcoatings.chesterton.com/Pages/Home.aspx