The World’s Largest Conveyors

Image credits: jbdodane/Flickr

By definition, conveyors are pieces of equipment that move materials or objects from one place to another place, from Point A to Point B. You’ll commonly find them in the likes of packaging plants, material handling facilities and auto shops – or really any place that requires the transportation of materials that are particularly large and heavy and would be otherwise difficult and inefficient to move by hand. But they’re found elsewhere around the world as well, which we’ll get to in a bit.

Conveyors are so widely used because of the many benefits they offer, such as:

  • The safe transportation of objects or materials.
  • They’re able to move materials and objects of all different shapes and sizes, so virtually everything is applicable.
  • They come in different varieties, and can be powered by many different means.
  • They can be easily and safely installed almost anywhere.

Focus on that last point for a moment – they can be installed almost anywhere. This is largely because they can be easily customized to adjust to the environment or setting that they need to be used in. On that note, it probably shouldn’t surprise you to learn that conveyors of all different sizes are out there, from the small to the very large. We decided it would be fun to take a look at the latter types of conveyors – the big ones. Just think of them as the largest of their kind in the world. Here’s a look.

The World’s Largest Conveyors

  • India: It’s hard to really pinpoint a location for this massive conveyor, so we’ll just say that it transports limestone from a crushing mine some 35 kilometers away to a Bangladesh cement shop in India. Once considered to be the longest conveyor belt of its time when commissioned in 2005, it is built on and supported by trestles. In addition to the belt running 35 kilometers in length, it is 800 millimeters wide. It’s also worth noting that there are no ends or transfers between both end pulleys. Bottom line – this puppy is a far cry from the conveyor belt that sends your goods down to the bagger at the grocery store.
  • Western Sahara: Said to be today’s largest conveyor belt system in the world, this one in the Western Sahara encompasses some 98 kilometers (or 61 miles) in length. Specifically, it was constructed to transport phosphate rocks from mines in Bou Craa to the port city of El-Aaiun, whether the product can then be exported around the world, mainly to be used as an ingredient in the likes of lawn and yard fertilizers. It’s said that this conveyor system can transport up to 2,000 metric tons of rock per hour. It’s visible from outer space, which goes to give you an indication of how massive it truly is. Also interesting to note is that the desert in the vicinity of the conveyor system also has a blue-colored tint to it from all the phosphate that has been blown off of the belt system by the wind over the years. The blue colored desert can also be seen from space.
  • Peru: It’s said to be the world’s largest pipe conveyor belt, and it rests in Peru – but this conveyor belt happens to be quite the engineering feat. You see, because Lima, Peru’s streets are more narrow than other streets around the rest of the world, the conveyor belt had to be designed and manufactured ever so carefully to conform to them. Today, it’s 16.4 kilometers long and works to bring cement clinker – and at a temperature of 80 degrees Celsius no less – from a cement plant down to the harbor where it can be exported. On its return trip, the belt brings coal and limestone back to the cement plant. The belt’s long stretch is about 8.2 kilometers long, about 6.5 kilometers of it which flows underneath the narrow streets of Lima. A pipe belt was the only way to accomplish the task at hand, notably because it can be built on rough terrain, maneuver tight corners with greater ease and minimize interaction between environment and material being shipped. What’s more is the ability to run this pipe conveyor belt underneath Lima’s streets means that shipping traffic can be reduced on ground level.
  • Andes Mountains: Although still big, this conveyor belt in the Chilean Andes is not the largest in the world. Instead, it holds the world record of being the steepest in the world, with an elevation of nearly 16,000 feet. Specifically, this belt services the Collahuasi mine complex in the mountain range, and building it to handle this type of steep terrain was a necessity in order to adequately transport the product.
  • Dublin, Ireland: Built in 1941, the conveyor belt that encompassed hills, valleys and roads in Dublin, Ireland was once the largest in the world. Although estimates varied on how big and how long the belt actually was, its purpose was clear – to deliver stones to the then-site of theShaster Dam during the time of its construction. The belt, fittingly, was removed following the construction of the dam.
  • Montalieu, France: Known as the largest conveyor belt in all of Europe, the 6.2 kilometer belt inMontalieu, France is designed to carry limestone from a quarry to a cement factory several kilometers away. The belt is powered by three electric motors and can move up to 1,000 tons of product at a time. The belt itself weighs 250 tons. The belt was initiated in November 2014 and is still active today.
  • Rockdale, Texas: At a coal mine in Rockdale, Texas, rests a 19-kilometer long conveyor belt that is designed to easily and efficiently transport coal from the mine to the city of Rockdale. Like several others on this list, parts of this conveyor belt are required to pass underneath the terrain or on very uneven terrain to get product to where it needs to go. The benefits of a belt like this for a purpose like this are its ability to supply coal around the clock – and to supply it affordably.

When you think of a conveyor belt, you might just think of a line that works inside an assembly plant or factory – not one that crosses deserts, flows underneath city streets or descends down from mountains. But these conveyor belts listed here just go to show you how flexible these systems are and what kind of potential they have. For more information on conveyor belts contact Bid on Equipment today.

October 2015 Trends Report

What has been bringing buyers to Bid on Equipment through the month of October and what are they looking for when they are here? This last month we noticed a large increase in interest in Electric Motors.
 
Below are the top ten search terms that have shown the largest increases from Internet search traffic this month.

 

Interest in each of these terms has grown 100% – 2000%!

Used Walk In Cooler For Sale Restaurant Equipment For Sale
Used Woodworking Tools Used Air Compressors For Sale
Used Bakery Equipment Used Warehouse Equipment
Used Machine Shop Tools Used Printing Equipment
Milling Machine For Sale Boilers For Sale
 
The top ten overall categories for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Woodworking Equipment Boilers
Bakery Equipment Tanks
Machine Shop and Tools Lathes
Dairy Equipment Meat Equipment
Conveyors Welding Equipment
 
The top ten overall Manufacturer Pages for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Bridgeport Combi
Cleaver Brooks Hussman
Bakers Pride Bertolaso
Miller Alto Shaam
Waukesha Bosch

Are there categories that you would like to see on Bid on Equipment? Or information you would like to see in future emails? Email us at [email protected]

Learn About Popcorn Poppers

When you think of popcorn, the first thing that probably comes to your mind is a movie theater. After all, popcorn just so happens to be the preferred snack while you’re taking in the latest flick at the local multiplex. And as you’d might imagine, movie theaters are one of the main locales for the larger, industrial popcorn poppers that can make the tasty treat in large amounts.

While movie theaters are most synonymous with popcorn, there are a number of other venues that need the same type of commercial, industrial equipment to mass produce the snack. Think of places like sports arenas, concert venues, high-production food processing facilities and more. But on the note of how the popcorn is actually produced, there’s a variety of different equipment to get the job done. Here’s a closer look at some of these different styles of equipment to better help you get a feel for the type of popcorn poppers that are out there today:

  • Giant poppers: These types of machines are generally made of stainless steel, and usually consists of several feet of space. The stainless steel makeup of the machine ensures that the equipment will not rust, which can be a big benefit, especially when oils are brought into the equation. These giant poppers generally have an area for kettle install, as well as a chute that takes processed popcorn to a storage container for packaging and transport. While able to produce a large amount of popcorn, these poppers are generally still compact enough to fit into a backroom.
  • Rotary Dry Popcorn Popper: These types of machines are best utilized on trailers, stands and in portable concessions stands, as they are small and compact, yet effective. Available in electric and gas varieties, these types of poppers are normally made of stainless steel and include galvanized sheet metal throughout the interior to maximize heat application. Most rotary dry popcorn units can hold up to 10 gallons of kernels and pop over 30 pounds of popcorn per hour.
  • Electric Dry Popcorn Popper: These are similar to the rotary dry popcorn poppers that we mentioned above in that they’re compact (yet probably a better fit for a backroom rather than a trailer or portable stand), made of steel and effective. One neat feature on most of these types of models, however, is that they automatically dispose of unpopped kernels into a waste drawer during the reversal of the cylinder.
  • Enclosed Machines: Available from manufacturers such as Coronado, these massive popcorn poppers are ideal for the likes of sports stadiums that must serve a lot of people within a brief window of time. So, as you might imagine, they’re best utilized in the backroom concession areas of such facilities, as they are not the most portable of popcorn poppers currently on the market today. These enclosed units typically include an oil pump, a large cabinet where the popping is actually done, a drive motor, warmer to keep the food hot over long periods of time and a heat diffuser to ensure that there’s even heating – and thereby efficient popping – for kernels no matter where they are located. These machines are typically constructed from stainless steel and come in a range of sizes to suit just about any venue.
  • Open Machines: There are enclosed popcorn poppers, and then there are open popcorn poppers. And while we covered the enclosed type in the above section (which are ideal for open venues and sports stadiums), open machines are better utilized in venues and forums where the building is covered. Like enclosed machines, these types of poppers come in a wide variety of different cabinet sizes to meet the needs of any venue. And also like enclosed poppers, these machines aren’t easily moved, which is why they’re best utilized in the back concession areas of sports stadiums, concert halls and other large venues. Finally, like their enclosed counterparts, this type of popcorn popper is among the most expensive that you can buy on the market. Typical price tags for brand new enclosed and open poppers can range up to $10,000 in price.

It’s also worth noting that when it comes to popcorn poppers, let alone any other type of commercial, industrial equipment piece, they’re not inexpensive to come by. You can see that just from the enclosed and open popper sections that we mentioned above, and certainly the same can be said of the other options that are presented on this list. Yes, depending on the size and style of the equipment, new machines can range in price anywhere from a few thousand dollars to well into the tens of thousands of dollars. Needless to say, but for many companies, no matter whether an existing popcorn machine has unexpectedly broken or it be trying to get into the business of popcorn production, this can be a lofty expense.

And that’s why if you’re ever in the market for a popcorn popper and don’t quite have the capital to buy brand new, you should consider going the used route. When doing business with a credible venue, such as Bid on Equipment, you can ensure that you’re getting like-new equipment at a used price. This is a win-win for you, as you don’t have to break the bank getting your operations kick started and can still rest assured that you’re getting a good product.

For more information on popcorn popping equipment, and to browse Bid on Equipment’s selection of used machines in stock, contact the company or visit it online today.