KSB’s slurry handling success in oil sands

Alberta, Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves within the type of oil sands. Extracting and processing the oil from the sands and bedrock is a challenging course of and requires the most important slurry pump in the oil sands industry.
When it comes to pumping slurry, there may be only a few purposes which are more challenging than the hydro-transport of professional quality slurries in oil sands production. Not solely do the pumps should contend with the extremely aggressive nature of the fluid being pumped, they’re also expected to operate in a variety of the harshest environments on the planet.
In January 2020, GIW Industries, Inc., a KSB company, commissioned its largest ever heavy-duty centrifugal slurry pump for operation in Canada’s oil sands, specifically the Tie Bolt Construction (TBC-92). Named after its ninety two in (2337 mm) impeller, the TBC-92 is the biggest and heaviest slurry pump obtainable within the oil sands business and the most recent in a line of highly effective high-pressure pumps provided by GIW.
Slurry transportation Slurry transport covers a considerable vary of trade sectors, ranging from meals and beverage to mining. What is frequent to all, is that the pumps used must be in a position to transport liquids containing particles and solids of varying sizes and viscosities. In mining, dredging and oil sands manufacturing, the biggest problem is to accommodate excessive density slurry and extremely abrasive grits.
It is important that the slurry passes by way of the pump with the minimal quantity of wear to the pump casing, impeller, shaft and sealing mechanism. Furthermore, the pump must be able to delivering high flows and in a position to stand up to harsh operating environments.
Alberta in Canada has extensive oil reserves and these are in the form of oil sands. Extracting and processing the oil from the sands and bedrock is difficult, involving the removal of bituminous ore which is transported to a crushing plant. The crushed ore is then combined with heat water to form a dense slurry that can be transported within the pipeline in the path of extraction, the place the bitumen is separated from the sand and rock. After extraction, the remaining solids (or tailings) are sometimes transported via completely different pumps to settling ponds.
The processes require in depth use of slurry and water transportation pumps capable of dealing with huge quantities of liquids at high 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 newest of which is the TBC-92.
Meeting challenges Mollie Timmerman, GIW enterprise development supervisor, explains extra: “Our consumer needed the next capacity pump which was capable of 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 additionally needed to have the ability to pass rocks of roughly one hundred thirty mm in diameter with a complete passage dimension requirement of 10 in (or 254 mm) and deal with slurry densities in excess of 1.5 SG.
In addition, the client was targeting a maintenance interval (operational time between deliberate maintenance) of round 3,000 hours. They had expressed an interest in maximising the upkeep intervals and based on preliminary wear indications, they are at present hoping to achieve around 6,000 hours between pump overhauls (i.e. 6–8 months).”

The quick software for the primary batch of GIW’s TBC-92 pumps in Alberta is in hydro-transport service the place they are used to move bitu- minous ore from the crusher to the extraction plant. The liquid pumped is a mixture of water, bitumen, sand, and enormous rocks. Screens are in place to keep these rocks to a manageable dimension for the method, however the top measurement can nonetheless typically attain up to a hundred thirty mm in diameter or bigger.
The abrasive nature of the slurry is what separates a slurry pump from other pumps used within the industry. Wear and erosion are information of life, and GIW has a long time of experience in the design of slurry pumps and the event of materials to assist extend the service life of those crucial parts to match the planned upkeep cycles in the plant.
“GIW already had a pump capable of the output requirement, this being the MDX-750, which has been a preferred size in mill duties for practically 10 years through- out Central and South America,” explains Mollie Timmerman. ”However, the customer’s application required a pump with greater strain capabilities and the aptitude of handling bigger rocks so we responded with the event of the TBC-92 which offered the best answer for maximised manufacturing.”

The TBC collection The construction style of GIW’s TBC pump range features massive, ribbed plates held along with tie bolts for very high-pressure service and most wear performance. First developed for dredge service, then later launched into the oil sands in the Nineties, the TBC pump sequence has grown into a completely developed range of pumps serving the oil sands, phosphate, dredging and exhausting rock mining industries for tailings and hydrotransport functions.
The pumps are sometimes grouped collectively in booster stations to construct strain as high as 750 psi (5171 kPa) to account for the pipe losses encountered over such long distances. The strong building of the TBC pump is nicely suited to do the job, while making certain most availability of the tools under heavily abrasive put on.
Capable of delivering stress up to 37 bar and flows of greater than 18,200m³/h and temperatures up to 120o C, the TBC vary is a horizontal, finish suction centrifugal pump that offers maximum resistance to wear. Simple to take care of, the pump’s tie-bolt design transfers stress hundreds away from the damage resistant white iron casing to the non- bearing side plates without the usage of heavy and unwieldy double-wall building.
ไดอะแฟรม -92 combines the most effective components of earlier TBC fashions, together with the TBC-84 oil sands tailing pump, also called the Super Pump. The pump also incorporates features from GIW’s MDX product line, which is utilized in heavy-duty mining circuits throughout the world of onerous 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 include a slurry diverter that dramatically will increase suction liner life by reducing particle recirculation between the impeller and the liner. The massive diameter impeller permits the pump to run at slower speeds so that wear life is enhanced. The lower speed additionally gives the pump the power to operate over a wider vary of flows so as to accommodate fluctuating move conditions.
To make upkeep simpler, the pump is fitted with a particular two-piece suction plate design which helps to minimize back tool time and provide safer lifting. Customers receive pump-specific lifting devices to facilitate the protected removing and set up of put on and tear comp- onents. The pump also contains a longlasting suction liner that might be adjusted without having to shut the pump down.
New milestone The commissioning of the TBC-92 marks an necessary milestone for GIW, which now has pumps in service in any respect working Canadian oil sands plants for hydrotransport purposes. The TBC-92 has been designed to sort out heavy-duty slurry transport whereas offering a low complete value of ownership. Minimal labour and maintenance time assist to maximise manufacturing and profit.
“This new pump incorporates the lessons discovered from working within the oil sands over many years, and features our newest hydraulic and put on applied sciences,” says Mollie Timmerman. “Because that is the heaviest TBC pump we have ever designed, explicit consideration was given to maintainability, as properly as material choice and development of the pressure-containing components.”

That GIW has established itself as a significant pressure in pumping solutions for the oil sands business is much from shocking provided that it has been developing pumping applied sciences and wear resistant materials in the global mining trade because the Nineteen 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 materials it turns into extremely environment friendly to pump the slurry along a pipeline to the upgrader. The pipeline agitation assists in separating the bitumen from the sand as it is transported, plus there is the extra benefit of removing the usage of trucks.
GIW has estimated that the price of moving oil sand on this means can cut costs by US$2 a barrel, and it is way more environmentally friendly. These pumps also play a significant function in transporting the coarse tailings to the tailings ponds. GIW supplies pumps used in the extraction process 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 products. GIW has been obtaining slurry samples from customers over many years for testing hydraulics and materials both for pumps and pipelines. Research & Development amenities embody multiple slurry take a look at beds on the campus, together with a hydraulics laboratory that’s dedicated to pump performance testing.
These activities are central to the company’s pump improvement programmes. If firms are experiencing problems the GIW R&D personnel can see the place the issue lies and provide advice for remedial action. Experience does indicate that in lots of circumstances the issue lies not with the pump nonetheless, however in the interplay between the pipeline and the pump.
Feedback from clients about appli- cations helps in the development of recent tools and pump designs. By bringing to- gether clients and academics from all round the world to share their experience and analysis with in-house consultants, the massive funding 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 clear pattern towards larger pumps in mining and dredging and oil sands are no exception,” comments Leo Perry, GIW lead product manager. “The first TBC pump within the oil sands trade was the TBC-46 (46 in being the diameter of the impeller). Customers are designing their services for greater and better manufacturing and demanding the same of the equipment that retains their production shifting. While these larger pumps demand extra energy, they also enable for larger manufacturing with less downtime required for upkeep. Overall, the efficiency improves when in comparison with the identical output from a larger amount of smaller pumps. “

In conclusion, he says: “Larger pumps go hand-in-hand with larger services, larger pipelines, and increased manufacturing, all of which proceed to trend greater yr after 12 months. Other prospects and industries have also proven an curiosity in this measurement, and it would be no shock at all to see extra of these pumps constructed within the close to future for comparable functions.”


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