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McLanahan Filter Presses Provide Long-Term Economic Advantages Over Other Dewatering Technologies

McLanahan Filter Presses are used to separate solids and liquids from fine material waste slurries to create a more easily managed solid material and recover immediately reusable process water. 

“Advantages of installing the McLanahan Filter Press include the ability to have a relatively dry, much more easily managed waste product and the ability to immediately recover reusable water that can be used in the processing plant,” explained Dennis Zink, Global Product Manager - Filter Presses.

Unlike other comparable dewatering technologies, such as belt presses and centrifuges, McLanahan Filter Presses do not require chemical additives to aid in the dewatering process. The McLanahan Filter Press uses high-pressure filtration to separate solids and liquids without the use of flocculants or coagulants to create the driest possible solid material. 

How Filter Presses work

The McLanahan Filter Press works by pumping fine material waste in the form of a slurry into a series of hydraulically closed plates. The plates are recessed on each side to form a chamber with the neighboring plate when closed. Filter cloths cover the plates to capture the solids, while the water passes through and out a set of flexible hoses in the lower corners of the plates. When no more water can be removed from the slurry, the  plates are separated   releasing the solid cakes that formed between the plates. 

The solid material is dry enough to be handled with a front-end loader or conveyor, then stacked in a permanent location on or off site, or it could potentially be sold as a new product. The recovered water can be reused immediately in the wet processing plant, which is beneficial for sites where water is scarce or expensive. 

Lower maintenance and operating costs

Maintenance costs are typically lower with a McLanahan Filter Press. The design of a Filter Press is relatively simple, with not many moving parts. The parts that do move, move slowly, so they don’t wear out as quickly and they don’t need to be replaced very often. 

Another advantage of the McLanahan Filter Press is a lower operating cost. The Filter Press is a fully automated system that doesn’t require a full-time operator, whereas the other technologies do require a full-time operator. Since the McLanahan Filter Press does not use chemical additives to dewater the slurry, those savings can also be realized over the life of the machine.

The McLanahan Advantage

To ensure the customer gets the right Filter Press solution for their site, McLanahan works with each customer to understand their tailings and water management goals. They then test the waste material in an in-house lab. 

“Each site is going to have material that dewaters uniquely,” Zink said. “We can’t apply just general rules to say every site is going to have the same characteristics of dewatering.”

Once the material has been tested, McLanahan then sizes the Filter Press to help the customer reach their goals. 

“In the end, the customer should be able to save money in comparison to what they’re doing trying to manage their ponds over the lifecycle of a pond,” said Zink.