Staying on Track

RWE Generation’s Eemshaven power plant is the largest coal and biomass power plant in the Netherlands and covered conveyor belts ensure dust-free transport of the coal from ships to the power plant or the storage yard. This process was always accompanied by jerks and jolts due to frequent belt
mistracking, resulting in constant downtime of the conveyor belts.

RWE consulted TBK Group, after which it was decided to install the CenTrax tracker rollers for a trial period. Within a month, it was already clear that CenTrax was the solution to their mistracking problem.

“We use several conveyor belts at our power plant. We use a hopper to transfer the coal from one conveyor to another, but coal from the US
and Russia is often damp, which means it sticks to the walls of the hopper. As a result, the load is then skewed when it reaches the conveyor belt, resulting in mistracking,” explains Gert-Jan Arkema, Maintenance Engineer Bulk Handling at RWE Generation Eemshaven.

Optimal contact between roller and conveyor

The CenTrax system is a multi roller tracker system, consisting of a central roller and a tapered tracker roller on both sides. The robust rollers are lined with 8mm of wear-resistant rubber.

The rubber vulcanisation process is carried out in an autoclave. This creates a permanent and seamless bond between the rubber and the steel roller shell. The rubber has a diamond profile to ensure optimal contact between roller and conveyor. Even when the conveyor belt is wet.

The combination of roller lining and swivel bearing, means the CenTrax belt tracker system has no equal. “This became clear within a month of the trials, and so we immediately arranged the installation of 51 CenTrax tracker systems,” says Alex Budding, the account manager at TBK Spillage Control. “As standard, we always perform a strength calculation for the CenTrax construction, a ‘finite element method’, which is what we did on the tracker rollers for RWE,” he continues.

Cost savings
“Previously, we had to stop the conveyors several times a day. We would stop everything to carry out a thorough clean, sometimes resulting in half a day of delays and costs. Now, a stop only occurs when a ship is empty or when the belt has run for a certain time and requires cleaning.

“Complete shut-down of the power plant was not an option, so several sessions were planned to install everything. The entire project took about
three weeks, including installation,” Alex concludes.

TBK Spillage Control
Alex Budding
Tel: +31 (0)318-745-740