Posts Tagged ‘Pneumatic Conveying’

Spark Control with Engineered Fabrics

May 30, 2013

Engineered Fabrics are an integral part of complete Bulk Material Handling Solutions

Compounds and materials used in the manufacturing of finished products run the range from inert to explosive. Because of this, it is vitally important to match the static and compound characteristics of flexible fabric connections, liners and filters to the correct composition for the required application. Failure to do so could result in explosive damage to your facility. When an ignition source contacts explosive dust the problems can multiply rapidly and become life threatening.

Correctly Determine if your Fabrics and Filters require grounding

It is imperative that attention be given to selecting the correct flexible fabric sleeves and to the filter media used in dust collection systems to properly limit the possibility of static discharge. Depending on air to dust ratios, materials and compounds can be inert at one ratio yet dangerous at another. Generally, the more oxygen available, the greater the chance of ignition. Many materials that are normally benign will ignite if exposed to an ignition source at the right material to air ratio.To minimize the threat of sparking and ignition, fabrics that have metal threads woven into them maintain continuity between the pipes they connect. Proper grounding is an essential part of sound bulk material handling practices. Dust Filters with a metal encased exterior and a ground strap can minimize a possible source of static discharge ignition.

Explosive Dust requires a well thought out set of solutions

When you require replacement fabric flexible connections, fabric basket liners and fabric sleeves, please contact us to discuss your application to make sure you are getting engineered fabrics that are correct for your application. While proper grounding is extremely important so are ignition detection devices and alarms, explosion venting, flame suppression systems, fast acting valves and blast deflection solutions. Further Reading – We have addressed Explosive Dust in a prior blog post which follows below;

Increased interest in OSHA Directives regarding Explosive Dust?

April 26, 2010

Last week, we were invited to a customer site to review the results of an OSHA visit for dust issues and to determine the curative steps to achieve compliance. This appears to be trending upward. In the last six months we have noted an increase in OSHA dust related Customer Site visits and an increase in Customer requests to provide equipment and expertise to address combustible dust issues. Simply read the national news to see that due to combustible dust explosions in recent years, safety agencies are taking a heightened interest in Combustible Dust Control.

Additionally, there is a  Meeting Summary Report that was issued on February 9, 2010. This report summarizes key discussion points during two stakeholder meetings that OSHA convened pertaining to its rulemaking on combustible dust. The two 3-hour meetings were held on December 14, 2009, at the Washington Marriott at Metro Center in Washington, D.C.

You can read the above mentioned event’s OSHA report at:

Doesn’t OSHA already have a program for Combustible Dust? The existing OSHA Combustible Dust Emphasis Program (effective date 03/08/2008)  addresses these categories

  • Metal dust such as aluminum and magnesium.
  • Wood dust
  • Coal and other carbon dusts.
  • Plastic dust and additives
  • Biosolids
  • Other organic dust such as sugar, flour, paper, soap, and dried blood.
  • Certain textile materials.

You can read the current Combustible Dust National Emphasis Program (Reissued) at:

O.A. Newton has expertise in these areas to assist you. If you are interested in having the existing Dust Handling Systems at your facilities reviewed for an Explosion Relief Retrofit, please contact O.A. Newton directly. We provide Engineered Material Handling Solutions to a Global Customer base.

Greg Mareski, Business Development Manager, O.A. Newton, Engineered Material Handling Systems.

Pneumatic Conveying System Guidelines

August 11, 2010

The Process

Pneumatic Conveying Systems deliver raw materials (usually powders and/or pellets) to extruders, mixers, coolers and other vessels and devices in the manufacturing process. The air used to convey those materials can either be vacuum or positive pressures, usually determined by the distances covered and the level of friability of the material being conveyed.

The Problem

Pneumatic Conveyors utilize industrial blowers that are engineered and constructed to run 24×7 for trouble-free amounts of time if (and only if) they are sized correctly.  Blowers sometimes fall victim to improperly applied and overly cost-conscience selection. An industrial blower is designed to operate within an engineered range that provides the proper level of performance. When a pneumatic conveying system is driven beyond the correct RPM range, you will be forced to deal with an increase in heat, it will work harder producing pressures it was never intended to produce and be forcing materials at a higher rate through a pipe that is now too small. Using a down-sized blower that is being over-driven beyond it’s operating range results in frequent breakdowns.

Clear Signs of Trouble

Product degradation and Angel Hair can be caused by overly high/extreme velocities, elevated temperatures and an undersized line.

Line Clogs, Slugging and Plugging can be caused by low velocity and pressures that are too high or too low.

Premature wearing-out of belts and sequencing valves can be caused by running an undersized unit which results in spinning the blower too fast and/or utilizing an undersized vacuum receiver with overly frequent fill cycles.

– Degrading of Capacity and Delivery can be caused by clogged filters, improper venting of the receiving vessel(s) and/or insufficient air volume.

Hidden Costs

Heat is bad. Heat is created by running the Blowers faster than the operating level it was designed for. Overdrive them and they will generate more life shortening, wear increasing heat.

Wasteful Energy usage. Blowers that are run beyond their maximum recommended output will burn more electricity than Blowers that are run within their operating range.  It’s a law of physics and like most laws-not negotiable.  Energy charges are higher during peak hours. With the importance of Green Technology, do you want the public to know you have an energy conscience and are running a “Green” operation? This is difficult to do with undersized blowers and overworked motors inefficiently burning up excess  electricity, wouldn’t you agree?

Noise – more decibels mean more operator complaints, unflattering Customer plant tours, possible OSHA workplace violations and greater image problems in general. Up sizing a Blower just to the next larger size provides a larger flow band volume at lower pressures and reduces heat production, decreases noise and lowers energy consumption.

Clogged Filters create more pressure, which creates more energy use, more heat, less throughput, etc. It is important to monitor pressure ranges in your filtration vessels when you (a) first install new filters, (2) eight hours later (or after the flowing particulates have helped increase the filtration ability of a brand new filter) and (3) at excessive pressure levels over the design range (usually between 8-12 psi on the magnehelic gauge).


Ultimately, every pneumatic system is about proper balance – the balance between pressure and velocity, the balance between material volume being moved and the volume of the air required to move it. If the blowers, line sizes and receivers are undersized, there are very few performance increasing options (short of replacement).  Receivers that are too small have to discharge more frequently to meet demand which results in more cycles, greater starts and stops and this creates more wear on the blowers, motors, belts, pulleys, etc.

Sizing the system requires experience.

There are proven ways to pneumatically convey powders and pellets reliably without trauma and breakdowns. Our Power Pressure Units and Vacuum Pressure Units are proven in the PVC, CPVC, Wood Fiber, Friction Products, Food and Pharmaceutical Industries.  We provide Project Management, Design and Engineering, Systems Integration, New Equipment, Components and Parts, Rail Car Unloading and Plug & Play Systems. Contact us and O.A. Newton will be happy to discuss how we can arrive at the most cost-effective solution for your unique operation. We manufacture our components here in Bridgeville, Delaware and can provide the correct custom solution for your unique plant and production needs. Don’t take our word for it, please click here to view Client Testimonials.

Greg Mareski, Business Development Manger, email:

What makes O.A. Newton different?

January 7, 2010

If you take a quick search on the web using Google, Yahoo, Bing or any other search tool, you will find that there are a large number of Engineered Material Handling Solutions Providers listed. So what makes O.A. Newton different?

(1) O.A. Newton has a long history, since 1916, of reducing costs and improving capacity. We provide well thought out solutions for our customers bulk material handling challenges.
(2) Our Engineering Team is solidly experienced in the Engineered Material Handling Solution business. We have an excellent reputation for providing innovative solutions in handling difficult powders and solving tough challenges.
(3) We do not offer you a cookie cutter solution that is “close” to what you want. We customize the solutions to fit your unique manufacturing requirements. We are proven System Integrators and we incorporate the products you have experience with, blended with our OEM Engineering and Fabrication. O.A. Newton then provides the warranty for the entire job so when it’s completed, you are satisfied.
(4) Our equipment is solidly built. We have installations that are running our equipment for over 25 years. And as an OEM, we can provide the parts and assemblies you need to keep your equipment running.
(5) Pricing that is competitive and offers exceptional value. Our solutions are an excellent value and provide you with solid R.O.I.
(6) We use the term “Engineered for Your Success” to describe the experience of working with us. Don’t take our word for it. Go to our website,, and read the Customer Testimonials. Please review the Components and Assemblies section to see examples of our quality products.
(7) O.A. Newton provides Project Management, Design and Engineering, Systems Integration, Components, Assemblies, Parts, Rail Car Unloading, Custom Design, Plug & Play Systems, Controls Integration & Customization.

When you have Material Handling needs we look forward to discussing the solutions that are right for your unique needs.

Greg Mareski, Business Development Manager for O.A. Newton.