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Technical Article

Strength of Titans


As published in Australian Bulk Handling Review

Abrasion is a killer when it comes to bulk handling equipment, as the flow of material wears down vital components.

Laurence Millington, Vortex Global’s managing director, told ABHR that the company’s customers have been looking for a more heavy-duty, abrasion-resistant slide gate.

“We took our standard roller gate and made it much stronger, which is how the Titan Slide Gate was created,” he said.

The Titan Slide Gate is designed to handle some of the most demanding applications when handling heavy-duty abrasive materials such as sand, gravel, coal, metal powders or minerals. It is used in gravity flow applications where positive material shut-off and dust-tight sealing are required.

It features a live loaded, hard polymer bonnet seals that compensate for wear and provide material seal across the gate. These seals can be swapped while the valve is still in-service, reducing downtime.  

The hard polymer seals have a compressed rubber backing to ensure that even as the polymer experiences frictional wear from many actuations over time, the rubber load seals continuously force the polymer seals against the sliding blade.  

When equipped with a special service inlet, the seals and rollers are also shielded from the material flow stream to protect them from abrasion. This design maintains the gate’s positive seal of materials with infrequent maintenance intervention.

The Titan Slide Gate also includes abrasion-resistant liners that can be replaced when needed, as well as easily accessible, hardened steel cam-adjustable rollers and polymer blade guides.  

Millington said a wide range of industries, from food to mining, wanted a slide gate that could handle intense use.

“The Titan Slide Gate comes with thicker blade assemblies and is manufactured out of carbon steel, but we can modify them to fit almost any application,” he said.

“We can change the sides or shape, provide stainless steel options, the options are almost endless.

“There have been some really unique requests, which have shown just how customisable the slide gates are.”

Adapting the slide gate to a system is made easy with a wide selection of gate positioning controls, position indication switches, and flanges. The gate also offers a wide variety of modifications to accommodate a range of temperatures, corrosive, humid, and explosive environments.

Vortex slide gates offer a wide variety of actuation choices, including electric, hydraulic, pneumatic, chain wheel, and hand crank. Features include hardened steel cam-adjustable rollers, grease zerks, side mounted switches, carbon steel contact, inlet or outlet transitions, seal access ports, and removable seals.

Millington said ease of maintenance was key to the slide gate’s design.

“It’s easy to strip down and all of the access points are on the side,” he said. “The cylinder mounting is standard and can be removed, along with the rollers if need be.

“When used in the correct application, the Titan Slide Gates require almost no maintenance and will last a very long time.

“If something does happen, we offer 24-hour support across the world and have local representation to ensure all of our customers have that peace of mind.”

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