KSB’s slurry dealing with success in oil sands

Alberta, Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves within the form of oil sands. Extracting and processing the oil from the sands and bedrock is a challenging process and requires the biggest slurry pump in the oil sands industry.
When it involves pumping slurry, there may be very few functions which might be more difficult than the hydro-transport of skilled quality slurries in oil sands manufacturing. Not only do the pumps should cope with the highly aggressive nature of the fluid being pumped, they are additionally anticipated to function in a few of the harshest environments in the world.
In January 2020, GIW Industries, Inc., a KSB firm, commissioned its largest ever heavy-duty centrifugal slurry pump for operation in Canada’s oil sands, namely the Tie Bolt Construction (TBC-92). Named after its ninety two in (2337 mm) impeller, the TBC-92 is the largest and heaviest slurry pump obtainable within the oil sands business and the newest in a line of highly effective high-pressure pumps supplied by GIW.
Slurry transportation Slurry transport covers a substantial vary of industry sectors, starting from meals and beverage to mining. What is widespread to all, is that the pumps used should be capable of transport liquids containing particles and solids of various sizes and viscosities. In mining, dredging and oil sands manufacturing, the biggest problem is to accommodate high density slurry and highly abrasive grits.
It is important that the slurry passes via the pump with the minimal quantity of put on and tear to the pump casing, impeller, shaft and sealing mechanism. Furthermore, the pump have to be able to delivering high flows and in a position to withstand harsh operating environments.
Alberta in Canada has in depth oil reserves and these are in the form of oil sands. Extracting and processing the oil from the sands and bedrock is challenging, involving the removing of bituminous ore which is transported to a crushing plant. The crushed ore is then combined with heat water to type a dense slurry that may be transported in the pipeline towards extraction, where the bitumen is separated from the sand and rock. After extraction, the remaining solids (or tailings) are sometimes transported via different pumps to settling ponds.
The processes require intensive use of slurry and water transportation pumps able to dealing with huge portions of liquids at excessive pressures and high temp- eratures. Drawing on its lengthy experience of designing slurry pumps for mining, GIW has custom-engineered slurry pumps that combine advanced supplies, hydraulics and patented mechanical designs, the most recent of which is the TBC-92.
Meeting challenges Mollie Timmerman, GIW enterprise improvement manager, explains more: “Our client wanted a better capability pump which was able to 10,000–11,000 m3 per hour of output at practically forty m of developed head and a maximum working pressure of 4000 kPa. The pump also needed to find a way to pass rocks of approximately a hundred thirty mm in diameter with a total passage size requirement of 10 in (or 254 mm) and deal with slurry densities in excess of 1.5 SG.
In addition, the shopper was concentrating on a maintenance interval (operational time between planned maintenance) of round three,000 hours. They had expressed an interest in maximising the maintenance intervals and based mostly on preliminary put on indications, they’re at present hoping to realize round 6,000 hours between pump overhauls (i.e. 6–8 months).”
The immediate utility for the primary batch of GIW’s TBC-92 pumps in Alberta is in hydro-transport service where they are used to maneuver bitu- minous ore from the crusher to the extraction plant. The liquid pumped is a combination of water, bitumen, sand, and enormous rocks. Screens are in place to keep these rocks to a manageable size for the method, but the prime size can nonetheless often attain as much as a hundred thirty mm in diameter or bigger.
The abrasive nature of the slurry is what separates a slurry pump from different pumps used within the trade. Wear and erosion are information of life, and GIW has decades of expertise within the design of slurry pumps and the development of materials to assist extend the service life of these critical parts to match the deliberate upkeep cycles within the plant.
“GIW already had a pump capable of the output requirement, this being the MDX-750, which has been a popular measurement in mill duties for almost 10 years through- out Central and South America,” explains Mollie Timmerman. ”However, the customer’s software required a pump with greater stress capabilities and the capability of handling larger rocks so we responded with the event of the TBC-92 which supplied the most effective answer for maximised manufacturing.”
The TBC collection The construction style of GIW’s TBC pump vary features massive, ribbed plates held together with tie bolts for very high-pressure service and most wear efficiency. First developed for dredge service, then later introduced into the oil sands within the Nineteen Nineties, the TBC pump series has grown into a fully developed vary of pumps serving the oil sands, phosphate, dredging and hard rock mining industries for tailings and hydrotransport applications.
The pumps are sometimes grouped collectively in booster stations to construct strain as excessive as 750 psi (5171 kPa) to account for the pipe losses encountered over such long distances. The robust construction of the TBC pump is well suited to do the job, whereas ensuring maximum availability of the tools underneath heavily abrasive wear.
Capable of delivering stress up to 37 bar and flows of more than 18,200m³/h and temperatures up to 120o C, the TBC range is a horizontal, finish suction centrifugal pump that gives maximum resistance to put on. Simple to take care of, the pump’s tie-bolt design transfers stress loads away from the damage resistant white iron casing to the non- bearing aspect plates with out using heavy and unwieldy double-wall construction.
The TBC-92 combines one of the best parts of earlier TBC fashions, including the TBC-84 oil sands tailing pump, also identified as the Super Pump. The pump additionally incorporates features from GIW’s MDX product line, which is used in heavy-duty mining circuits all through the world of hard rock mining.
In total, the TBC-92 weighs about 209,000 lbs (95,000 kg), which is roughly equivalent to a fully-loaded Airbus A321 aeroplane. The casing alone weighs 34,000 lbs (15,500 kg). Key options of the pump embody a slurry diverter that dramatically increases suction liner life by decreasing particle recirculation between the impeller and the liner. The massive diameter impeller allows the pump to run at slower speeds in order that wear life is enhanced. The lower speed also gives the pump the ability to operate over a wider vary of flows to have the ability to accommodate fluctuating move circumstances.
To make maintenance simpler, the pump is fitted with a special two-piece suction plate design which helps to scale back device time and provide safer lifting. Customers obtain pump-specific lifting gadgets to facilitate the protected elimination and installation of wear comp- onents. The pump additionally features a longlasting suction liner that could be adjusted while not having to shut the pump down.
New milestone The commissioning of the TBC-92 marks an important milestone for GIW, which now has pumps in service in any respect working Canadian oil sands plants for hydrotransport functions. The TBC-92 has been designed to deal with heavy-duty slurry transport while offering a low complete cost of ownership. Minimal labour and upkeep time help to maximise production and revenue.
Cancel anytime incorporates the lessons realized from working within the oil sands over a few years, and features our latest hydraulic and put on applied sciences,” says Mollie Timmerman. “Because this is the heaviest TBC pump we’ve ever designed, particular consideration was given to maintainability, in addition to material choice and development of the pressure-containing elements.”
That GIW has established itself as a significant force in pumping solutions for the oil sands business is way from stunning provided that it has been growing pumping applied sciences and put on resistant materials in the global mining industry for the rationale that Forties.
These pumps have had a considerable impact on the way that excavated sand, rock and bitumen are transported to the upgrader plant. By adding water to the excavated material it turns into highly efficient to pump the slurry alongside a pipeline to the upgrader. The pipeline agitation assists in separating the bitumen from the sand as it’s transported, plus there is the extra good thing about removing the utilization of vehicles.
GIW has estimated that the value of transferring oil sand in this means can cut prices by US$2 a barrel, and it is way more environmentally pleasant. These pumps also play a significant role in transporting the coarse tailings to the tailings ponds. GIW supplies pumps used in the extraction course of and different areas of manufacturing (HVF, MDX, LSA).
Understanding slurries Understanding the nature of slurries and how they behave when being pumped has been basic to the event of those merchandise. GIW has been acquiring slurry samples from clients over a few years for testing hydraulics and materials both for pumps and pipelines. Research & Development facilities embrace a quantity of slurry check beds on the campus, along with a hydraulics laboratory that’s devoted to pump performance testing.
These actions are central to the company’s pump growth programmes. If companies are experiencing problems the GIW R&D personnel can see the place the problem lies and offer advice for remedial action. Experience does indicate that in plenty of instances the issue lies not with the pump nevertheless, however within the interplay between the pipeline and the pump.
Feedback from customers about appli- cations helps in the improvement of new instruments and pump designs. By bringing to- gether clients and teachers from all round the world to share their expertise and research with in-house experts, the huge investment in research, development and manufacturing has advanced the design of all the GIW pump products,supplies and wear-resistant components.
The future “There is a transparent trend towards bigger pumps in mining and dredging and oil sands are not any exception,” comments Leo Perry, GIW lead product supervisor. “ Backdoor within the oil sands trade was the TBC-46 (46 in being the diameter of the impeller). Customers are designing their facilities for greater and better manufacturing and demanding the same of the tools that keeps their production moving. While these larger pumps demand extra power, additionally they permit for greater manufacturing with much less downtime required for maintenance. Overall, the efficiency improves when in comparison with the same output from a bigger quantity of smaller pumps. “
In conclusion, he says: “Larger pumps go hand-in-hand with bigger services, bigger pipelines, and elevated production, all of which continue to trend greater 12 months after 12 months. Other prospects and industries have also proven an interest on this size, and it would be no shock in any respect to see more of these pumps constructed within the near future for similar applications.”

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