A ready mix company in Michigan that was looking to supply its own aggregates for its ready mix facility recently purchased a quarry with the goal of setting up a sand processing plant there. The company wanted to produce clean concrete and mason sand as well as clean coarse aggregate.
One of the company’s main concerns was lignite contamination in its sand products. Lignite can create pop-outs, deformations and discoloration in concrete products, so it is imperative that as much of the lignite be removed from the sand as possible.
Another challenge was the variation in feed material for which the company’s processing plant needed to be able to adjust.
“Drastic swings in feed gradations can wreak havoc on process equipment, and you can have issues with producing a consistent product,” said McLanahan Regional Sales Manager Matthew Lear.
Through McLanahan’s Michigan dealer, HiPoint Aggregate Equipment LLC, the company sought out a solution from McLanahan.
“McLanahan has a very long history of processing experience,” Lear said. “They knew that we have a lot of experience in the field working with sand and coarse aggregate products.”
In order for McLanahan to design the right solution for the company’s unique application, the company shipped samples of their feed material to McLanahan’s Applications and Research Laboratory in Hollidaysburg, Pa. for analysis. Based on those gradations, McLanahan partnered with HiPoint to provide the company with a full turnkey system to produce clean coarse aggregate and clean, in-spec sand products — a concrete sand and a mason sand product. The processing plant includes a Horizontal Sizing Screen, Log Washer, Rinse Screen, Lites-Out™ Flat Bottom Classifier, Sand-Manager® Sand Classifying Tank, Pumps and two UltraSAND Plant dewatering circuits.
“What led them to the purchase was really our turnkey capability with HiPoint and McLanahan working as a team to design the system, supply the equipment, supply the structure and all the piping, and also to install and commission the system,” Lear said. “We helped them as a partner to make sure they were successful in producing clean products at the end of the day.”
Each component of the plant was specifically chosen to help the company reach their goals of clean, in-spec sand and clean coarse aggregate while accommodating for varying feeds with the use of a Sand Manager Sand Classifying Tank. On the aggregate side, a McLanahan Log Washer was able to remove the toughest clays to discharge clean coarse material. On the sand side, McLanahan’s Lites-Out™ Flat Bottom Classifier is designed to separate and remove lignite from feed material to produce an ASTM, in-spec sand product. The sand is then pumped to a McLanahan Sand Classifying Tank, which is great at producing clean, in-spec products no matter what gradation it is fed. The sand is then discharged to the UltraSAND Plants to dewater the material and recover fines for a drip-free material without product loss.
“It’s a very intricate system where a lot of pieces are working together,” Lear explained. “They had to be designed and sized properly to operate at their most efficient point.”
The main benefit of this McLanahan plant is its ability to handle multiple feed gradations and produce two clean, in-spec, sand products at the same time, which it has been doing very efficiently since startup.
“Overall, it’s been running really well,” Lear shared. “They’re getting clean coarse aggregate and clean concrete sand and mason sand.”