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A Kason in-line Pneumati-Sifter Vibroscreen circular vibratory separator has screened over one million tons of clay over 25 years without an equipment failure.

This is according to John Taylor, production manager of Pfaltzgraff, a 190-year manufacturer of stoneware products.

The system moves raw materials from any of 10 15m-high silos containing clay, silica, alumina, lime and other ingredients through a pneumatic conveying system to a central weigh hopper.

Ingredients are weighed in sequence and discharged as 1,360kg batches into a pressurised surge hopper equipped with a rotary airlock valve that meters 600lbs/min of material into the 1,525mm-diameter in-line sifter.

The sifter, designed for 14.7psig pressure, removes agglomerates, paper scraps and other foreign particles larger than 1,880um, preparing the clay that will form the stoneware body and determine its finish.

Magnets upstream and downstream of the screener remove iron particles.

The circular vibratory screener is equipped with an imbalanced-weight gyratory motor that imparts multi-plane inertial vibration to two spring-mounted screening decks, causing oversize particles to vibrate across the screen surface in controlled pathways to the screen periphery, where they are discharged.

Screening efficiency improves by forcing the particles to pass over a maximum amount of screen surface.

The unit screens a 1,360kg batch in 5min, in line with the pneumatic conveying system.

To prevent sharp, angular particles from blinding screen apertures, the screener is equipped with a ball-tray anti-blinding device consisting of elastomeric balls that are captive in a narrow space below the top #10 mesh (1,880um) working screen and above the #4 mesh (4,750um) ball screen.

Vibratory action of the screener causes the balls to bounce against the underside of the working screen, dislodging particles wedged in screen apertures.

Oversize particles exit through a discharge spout at the periphery of the top frame.

Screened clay exits the bottom frame discharge into a holding hopper, then into a pug mill, which mixes the clay with water before it is conveyed through an auger, cut, wrapped in plastic and stored for up to three months.

The stoneware production takes place in numerous manufacturing processes.

Kason manufactures circular vibratory screeners and centrifugal screeners for scalping and dewatering applications, as well as fluid-bed dryers, coolers and moisturisers.

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