In Process Solution



A metals and mining company needed to automate the processing of their liquid waste material stream – a mixture of water with base and semi-precious metals. Their existing batch process was inefficient as it required shutting off flow into the chamber to recharge iron into their process. Additionally, the time required to mechanically screen/separate the material, and then refill the tank again, was a significant time consumer. The efficiency of the chemical processing declined over time and even reversed. Additionally the batch process had no process control whatsoever.  


Having a proprietary design used in similar mechano-chemical reaction applications, the VIBRA-DRUM®TM Grinding Mill was suggested. Due to the unique nature of the material, a test drum was installed for two months to validate the process. The customer developed a residence time curve to determine the optimum operating parameters, flow rates and more. This provided not only an opportunity for this customer to see the VIBRA-DRUM®TM in action with their materials, but also a chance for General Kinematics engineers to assess the GPM to determine what drum size would be needed.  


FEA Analysis was done by GK to determine the best configuration for the equipment. Four, 4’x21’ VIBRA-DRUM®TM machines were installed. During the design process, many materials were considered for construction of the machines, but due to the reactivity of the process chemistry, the drums were made of 316 stainless steel that would be suitable for all media and liquid contact surfaces.  


The four GK VIBRA-DRUM®TM units have been running for the last nine months, producing recovery rates consistently around 83%. Within their system, they consume a proportional amount of media per day through each drum to produce a high volume of final product per day per drum. Each drum is now taking waste water and turning it into money. It has also decreased the cost of the related operations, thus contributing to the payback of the investment. The contained and automated process has created significant environmental advantages as well over their previous system. General Kinematics engineering and application team continue to support and service the needs of the customer, to fine tune the process and maximize the customers’ material recovery, throughput and return on their investment.  

About General Kinematics

General Kinematics Corporation, incorporated in 1960, was established to market, design, and custom fabricate innovative vibratory materials handling and processing equipment. Today the company is one of the world’s largest suppliers of vibratory processing equipment, holding more than 200 worldwide patents, and is acknowledged as a major contributor to the technical advancement of vibrating equipment design and application. Today, over 50,000 General Kinematics units have been installed in virtually all of the world’s industrialized countries. For more information about General Kinematics products and services, visit the company’s website at  
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  • Amy Donahue