Custom hopper liner easily handles 8+ million tons of coal
A power company installs a custom polymer liner in a coal hopper to improve material discharge.
Appalachian Power Co., a subsidiary of American Electric Power (AEP), operates a coal-fired power plant near Glen Lyn, Va., that can generate up to 340 megawatts of electricity. When operating at peak capacity, the Glen Lyn plant annually consumes more than 700,000 tons of bituminous coal, which is delivered to the plant in 100-ton-capacity bottom-dump railcars. The coal discharges from each railcar into a 35-ton-capacity pyramid-shaped in-ground bunker hopper, then onto a large belt conveyor directly beneath the hopper. The conveyor moves the coal to the plant’s main storage bunkers, where it’s kept before being transferred to the furnace. The plant had problems with the coal discharging from the hopper that required extra labor and overtime to resolve. To lower operating costs and improve the railcar-unloading efficiency, the plant needed to find a cost-effective way to ensure consistent discharge.