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VIBRATING OR OSCILLATING CONVEYORS

Most vibrating conveyors are essentially directional-throw units which consist of a


spring-supported horizontal pan vibrated by a directconnected eccentric arm, rotating eccentric
weights, an electromagnet, or a pneumatic or hydraulic cylinder. The motion imparted to the
material particles may vary, but its purpose is to throw the material upward and forward so that it
will travel along the conveyor path in a series of short hops. The capacity of directional-throw
vibrating conveyors is determined by the magnitude of trough displacement, frequency of this
displacement, angle of throw, slope of trough, and ability of the material to receive and transmit
through its mass the directional throw of the trough. The material itself is the most important
factor. To be conveyed properly it should have a high friction factor on steel as well as a high
internal friction factor so that conveying action is transmitted through its entire depth. Thus deep
loads tend to move more slowly than thin ones. Material must also be dense enough to minimize
the effect of air resistance on its trajectory, and it should not aerate. Tests have shown that
granular materials handle better than pulverized materials and flat or irregular shapes better than
spherical ones.
Classification of vibrating conveyors can probably best be based on drive characteristics
as shown in Fig. 21-7. All these types transmit vibration to their supporting structures, but the
direct, or positive, drive is the worst offender and should be mounted on a heavy supporting
structure if it is not counterbalanced. Semipositive- and nonpositive- drive types reduce vibration
effects because thrust is transmitted over the entire support length rather than at a specific point.
Regardless of drive type, care should be taken to mount the conveyor properly so that supporting
structures will not be damaged. The frequency of vibration of the conveyor should in no case be
at or near the natural frequency of the supporting structure.
a. Mechanical vibrating conveyors are designed to operate at specific frequencies and do
not perform well at other frequencies without carefully designed alterations. Thus they
are not adapted to frequent capacity changes except by varying the depth of material fed
to the trough. Positive eccentric drives maintain their frequency and magnitude of stroke
regardless of load, and serious drive damage can result from overloading. Rotating
eccentric weights can also provide the motive force, and although they maintain a
constant frequency, the magnitude of stroke is definitely affected by the load.
Directionalthrow mechanical vibrating conveyors are used primarily for conveying and
do not usually perform well as feeders.
b. Electrical vibrating conveyors are characterized by the fact that there is no contact
between the drive and the conveying medium. They operate on a pull-release cycle or a
pull-push cycle, using direct current and pulsating electromagnets or alternating current
combined with electromagnets and permanent magnets. While most electrical vibrating
units are used as feeders, they also work well as conveyors. Most of them offer the
advantage of capacity regulation through control of the electric current magnitude via
rheostats. Figure 21-8 gives capacities as a function of pan size and power consumption.
c. Pneumatic and hydraulic vibrating conveyors have as their greatest asset elimination
of explosion hazards. If pressurized air, water, or oil is available, they can be extremely
practical since their drive design is relatively simple and pressure-control valves can be
used to vary capacity either manually or automatically.

The capacity of vibrating conveyors is extremely broad, ranging from thousands of tons
down to grams or ounces. Since so many variables affect their ability to convey, there is no
simple formula for figuring capacity and power. Available data are generally the results of
experiments and empirical equations, with most manufacturers providing selection charts for
specific types of conveyors and materials. A typical leaf-spring unit is shown in Fig. 21-8, along
with the graphical information required to select a standard unit. Conveyor lengths are limited to
about 61 m (200 ft) with multiple drives and about 30.5 m (100 ft) with a single drive. There are
many exceptions to these general limitations, and they should not preclude study of a specific
problem when vibrating conveyors seem desirable.
Processing operations of many types can be carried out in vibrating conveyors because
their simple conveying troughs can be modified quite easily. While tube and flat-pan troughs are
most common, troughs can be provided in a wide variety of shapes and materials. Although
conveying action is usually so gentle that abrasion problems do not arise, such problems can be
easily solved when they do occur by the use of special materials or liners. Troughs are easily
sealed to prevent contamination or for operation under positive or negative pressure. With screen
or perforated deck plates, vibrating conveyors can dewater, rough-screen, scalp, or dry. Heating
and cooling can also be handled by the use of air streams blowing over or through the material,
infrared panels, resistance-heating panels, or contact with air- or water-cooled or heated trough
casings. Special vibratingconveyor designs are available for elevating at relatively steep slopes
or up a spiral trough. There is probably no other conveyor so readily adaptable to the solution of
processing problems.

Motor

2 Reduction Gear
3

Vertical Shaft

4
5
6
7
8
9
10

Exit Chute
Bottom Pan
Scrape plate
Feeding Table
Lower Vessel
Upper Vessel
Exit Gate