McLanahan Filter Press Headed to Malaysian Gold Mine

A McLanahan Side Beam Filter Press is headed to a mine in the Central Gold Belt of Western Malaysia. The customer, a gold producer processing approximately 1 million tonnes per year, will be using the Filter Press to assist with their gold-sulphide processing requirements as they extend their existing site.

Once installed, the McLanahan Side Beam Filter Press will be used to dewater the underflow from a concentrate thickener to produce solid cakes for efficient shipping and handling.

The Filter Press features 21 recessed plates that measure 1500mm x 1500mm (59” x 59”) with a 35mm chamber thickness. A hydraulic cylinder is used to clamp the filter plates tightly together at the beginning of each dewatering cycle, the recesses in the plates form chambers with the adjacent plates. The slurry is then pumped into the Filter Press, filling the chambers between the plates. The liquid in the slurry filters through cloths on the plates and flows into a manifold to be sent back to the thickener, while the solids in the slurry are captured on the cloth and remain in the press. When the desired cake moisture has been achieved, the pump stops, and the Filter Press opens to discharge the dewatered cakes.

The Filter Press was designed to open up to 21 plates with a single cylinder stroke. With higher plates counts, up to 10 plates are opened in groups to ensure an optimum balance between cycle time and equipment footprint. The Filter Press was also supplied with core blow and cake dry functions to further reduce the moisture in the final dewatered product.

A new side beam design

This Side Beam Filter Press is the first of a new standardised design set to streamline McLanahan’s manufacturing of Filter Presses in the future. The filter plates are mounted from beams located on each side of the plates, hence the designation of “Side Beam Filter Press”. The design incorporates a plate shake mechanism to assist with discharging the dewatered cakes at the end of a cycle, as well as top-oriented spray bars for rinsing the filter cloths clean. These spray bars are able to be raised as a group for greater access when nozzle maintenance is required.

The new side beam design also features simple access to the filter plates from above the press. This allows for quick filter cloth changeouts as well as efficient filter cloth and plate cleaning when needed. When spare filter plates are available, the filter cloths can be pre-installed, making the filter cloth change very quick and further optimizing the Filter Press operating time.

Additional benefits of the Side Beam Filter Press include:

  • A safer design with less moving parts
  • A cost-effective design with a lower wear parts cost
  • Safety and durability with a heavy-duty design
  • Reduced operating costs through PLC automation
  • Reduction in chemical usage resulting in cost savings and environmental benefits
  • A drier final product, that is easily transportable

As with any new product or design coming from McLanahan’s Research and Development Team, the Side Beam Filter Press underwent weeks of testing to verify the functional mechanical and electrical operation. This allowed McLanahan to fine-tune the design, leading to a safer and more robust system. It also allowed them to make tweaks to improve the performance of the machine. Overall, the R&D Team said the testing validated the design criteria and confirmed it was a solid design. 

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