By Todd Messmer, Schenck Process
To select a feeder that reliably dispenses your bulk solid material at the rate your process requires, you need to understand your material and how it flows. After giving some background on material flow properties, this article describes common feeders, their major pros and cons, and how to match a feeder to your material's flow behavior.
Are your customers demanding higher-quality products? Are you trying to eliminate repetitive-motion injuries to workers and reduce your raw material costs? Then it's time to consider replacing your manual feeding method with a dry bulk solids feeder that can provide more accurate feeding, eliminate manual handling and feeding tasks, and allow you to receive your raw materials in bulk, reducing their cost.
With the variety of bulk solids feeders available today, choosing the one best suited to your application will take some serious research. You need to begin by identifying your material's flow characteristics. Why? Not all feeders are suited to handling all materials. Whether you conduct your own material tests or have an independent lab or your feeder supplier's lab do them, the more you know about your material and how it flows, the easier it will be to narrow your feeder choices.