Adventures in pneumatic conveying
A reader recently commented that in my columns it appears that all pneumatic conveying systems turn out perfectly and convey materials without problems. When I responded that I've witnessed plenty of problematic conveying tests and some total system failures, he suggested that I share some of them with readers so you can learn from others' mistakes. So in this column, we'll cover some of these adventures in pneumatic conveying, most of them for transporting unusual materials, and discuss the hard-won successes along with some spectacular failures.
Many years ago I developed a pneumatic conveying system for handling pecans in their shells. Since the nuts were going into storage, it was important to keep the shells intact during handling. The system layout would be quite simple: A material feedpoint, an 80-foot vertical leg, a 60-foot horizontal leg, and a discharge into a storage silo.