McLanahan | McLanahan Delivers Tailored Mineral Processing Equipment…


McLanahan Delivers Tailored Mineral Processing Equipment to Mexican Refinery

When a new refinery needed mineral processing equipment, the owners returned to their preferred supplier, McLanahan, and the company’s tailored equipment.

The customer, a large engineering and construction firm, required crushing and feeding equipment for a new refinery in the southeast region of Mexico. The refinery features a delayed coking unit, which is designed to convert residue from the distillation plant into higher-value products.

After successfully working with McLanahan for the supply of mineral processing equipment on a previous refinery, they again contacted McLanahan for their new project. 

Site hazards and project requirements

This site is in a highly corrosive environment, and the equipment supplied had to meet the demands of the hazardous location. As the coking unit is situated in an electrically hazardous and high dust prone area, site specific conditions had to be met, including the condition that all supplied electrical equipment had to be explosion proof.

The customer specifically wanted a Feeder-Breaker for the plant due to their previous experience with this type of equipment. The Feeder-Breaker would receive pet coke from clamshell bucket cranes via a hopper. The material would then be crushed by the breaker head, and this crushed material would be fed onto an elevated feeder conveyor. The hopper was designed based on the customer’s specifications to efficiently receive product from the cranes and to reduce the environmental impacts of the equipment on site.

Engineering delivers a tailored solution

After contacting the McLanahan office in Chile, the McLanahan teams worked together to provide the best solution for the customer. The Australian engineering team conducted various design risk reviews and finite element assessments to ensure all stress loads complied to the required engineering standards. The Australian, American, and Chilean sales and engineering teams successfully collaborated to provide the customer with two custom McLanahan Feeder-Breakers. They are designed to feed and crush petroleum coke from an in-feed lump size of 450mm x 450mm to 100mm nominal, with a maximum throughput capacity of 1,150 MTPH each.


Each Feeder-Breaker features:

  • • A single drag chain conveyor
  • • A breaker roll consisting of replaceable, carbide-tipped picks retained in replaceable pick holders
  • • A custom frame with sloping sides and end panel to maximize dump hopper volume and minimize hopper height
  • • A redesigned, longer discharge section than a traditional Feeder-Breaker
  • • Head and tail shaft removable assemblies. This enables the assemblies to be removed from the machine without moving the chute work
  • • Inner wear elements designed as standard and relocatable to minimize parts
  • • An electromechanical drive system as requested by the client
  • • A semi-automatic chain tensioning system
  • • A feed hopper with liners with a top opening of 7.62m x 7.62m and including a 20-degree inclined grizzly with 460mm square openings

The Feeder-Breaker FB-36-72-45 is 15.7m in length, and the Feed Hopper is 9.8m long and sits 9.84m above the Feeder-Breaker. The Feeder-Breaker was designed with a longer discharge section, as the customer required additional access to allow for maintenance, removal and replacement of the tail end pulleys on the conveyor.

The Hoppers feature an innovative design allowing them to be shipped as flat packs and bolted together on site, thereby eliminating the requirement for site hot works. This was important due to the highly hazardous site location. The hopper has a capacity of approximately 30m³ in a trapezoidal layout with no angle being less than 55 degrees.

Tailored project management

Both Feeder-Breakers were manufactured in Australia using local suppliers and contractors. Assembly and Factoring Acceptance Testing (FAT) was completed at McLanahan’s Newcastle facility. Additional monitoring and testing was required during the manufacturing process due to the protective specifications required by the customer because of the corrosive and hazardous site location.

With customers located around the world, McLanahan successfully manages and accommodates their needs through virtual and traditional means. The FAT included a live stream for the customer and their representatives to view, and numerous videos and photographs were included in the reporting and updates they received throughout the project.

The equipment was then partially disassembled for break bulk freight to Mexico. Due to the stringent site requirements, the customer requested additional packaging protection to prevent moisture buildup during the delivery process. To prevent damage during delivery, the conveyor drives and breakers were removed and containerized with additional smaller components. The Feeder-Breakers will be stored on site by the customer before installation at the end of 2022.

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