Contract for Bailadila Mainline Pumps

08.09.2003

Hy-Grade Pellets, with the commissioning of a slurry pipeline in 2004, saves over 45 million US dollars per year when operated at rated capacity in the cost of transporting iron ore. The pipeline puts an end to a 437 km rail haul of iron ore fines from the mine site to the pellet plant.

Hy-Grade Pellets, which is 51% owned by Stemcor and 49% by the Essar Group, operates a pelletisation plant at Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, on the east coast of the Indian subcontinent. The pellet plant was commissioned in 1996 to cater for the demand of the steel plant at Hazira, Gujarat, which is owned by Essar Steel Ltd., and also for the export market. The iron ore fines come from the Bailadila mines in Chhattissgarh. The screened fines are supplied from National Minerals Development Corporation - a public sector unit engaged in mining activities.

The pipeline is part of a large and ambitious project. It also comprises a beneficiation unit for the upgrade of the iron ore fines quality at Bailadila near the NMDC screening plant, the expansion of the pellet plant and a captive power plant. The project significantly increases the export of high quality direct reduction iron ore pellets and helps the infrastructure development of the region by releasing scarce railway transportation resources and adding to the power supply.

The pipeline has two pumping stations. One at Bailadila and the second 'booster station' in a remote mountainous jungle area. Each station is equipped with four GEHO model TZPM triplex, single-action, crankshaft-driven piston diaphragm pumps. The GEHO pumps are capable of transporting iron ore slurry, consisting of 66 Wt. % iron ore and 34% water, over 268 km distance at a flow rate of 657 m³/h. Each pump handles one third of that flow. However, unless a pump is down for maintenance, all four pumps operate in parallel at a reduced stroke rate. The proven high availability of the GEHO pump facilitates this attractive mode of operation and enabled deletion of the fifth, standby pump that was foreseen for in the initial study performed by Bechtel.

The GEHO piston diaphragm pumps ordered ensure Hy-Grade Pellets the benefits of lower operating cost, incremental pipeline throughput and proven experience in comparison to the use of flushed-plunger pumps. The GEHO piston diaphragm pump has a deserved reputation for low operating costs and high availability.

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