WEBA CHUTES PROVIDE SOLUTION AT CARMEN DE ANDACOLLO IN CHILE
Weba Chute Systems has successfully engineered a new transfer point to replace an underperforming
chute at Carmen de Andacollo in the Coquimbo region of Central Chile.
Carmen de Andacollo is an open pit copper operation; Teck owns a 90% interest in the mine with
Empresa Nacional de Mineria holding the balance of shares.
The new chute system transfers material from a double deck screen feeding oversize material
from both decks to a conveyor. Material throughput is 2 000 tph with a lump size of minus 85
Alwin Nienaber, technical director at Weba Chute Systems, explains that in the previous
installation the manner in which material was being presented onto the conveyor was causing
impact damage and excessive spillage. The spillage had to be controlled using extremely hard
skirtings under such tension that this had been causing extreme damage to the conveyor
resulting in frequent belt replacement.
“It is not uncommon for us to see this type of issue which arises from inadequate plant
design,” Nienaber says. “When the transfer points do not receive the requisite attention
during the design of the plant, numerous problems can occur during operation.”
As a transfer point specialist, Weba Chute Systems is a strong advocate of their involvement at
the start of a project. “This approach ensures that the transfer points are engineered for
the particular plant, with the advantage that material transfer will be optimised and wear and
impact issues such as those found at Carmen de Andacollo could be mitigated from the
Where operational plants experience issues with transfer points, Weba Chute Systems sends
in its technical team to conduct a full design assessment.
According to Nienaber this is a critical step in the process as it will ensure that the solution
provided takes all factors into account. He explains that the previous chute was essentially
just a box structure and this was problematic as the material flow was not controlled and it
directly impacted onto the conveyor from the screen. To add to this situation the receiving
conveyor design was also compromised.
“We were able to design a new transfer point solution that would accommodate the shallow
flow angle required in this application,” he says. “By custom engineering the chute we were
also able to design it in such a way so as to feed the material onto the conveyor in the direction
of belt travel. This then eliminated the issues associated with the previous direct impact.”
The design of Weba Chute Systems also allows for absolute control of the material and, in this
application, has been configured to force a concentrated stream from the screen decks onto
the conveyor. Due to the compromised general arrangement between the screen and
conveyor, skirts are still required to eliminate spillage.
To provide further protection against sliding abrasion, the chute has been lined with high
alumina ceramic tiles.
The Weba Chute Systems installation at Carmen de Andacollo was commissioned in the first
quarter of 2017. Nienaber says that much of the work has been done through Weba South
America which was established in Chile to service this region.
Under the leadership of Pedro Javier Vega, Weba South America has been making inroads into
the mining and minerals processing sector. “The local team has a good understanding of the
industry, its immediate and long terms needs and will provide consistent support to this
customer,” Nienaber says.
SOLUTION PIC 01 : Weba Chute Systems has successfully engineered a new transfer point to replace an underperforming chute at
Carmen de Andacollo in the Coquimbo region of Central Chile.
SOLUTION PIC 02 : The new chute system transfers material from a double deck screen feeding oversize material from both decks
to a conveyor.
SOLUTION PIC 03 : By custom engineering the chute we were also able to design it in such a way so as to feed the material onto
the conveyor in the direction of belt travel.