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Case-study: Plate conveyor belt for drying potato products

Summary

A customer challenged us to engineer and develop a special conveyor belt for use in potato dryer systems. As a conventional conveyor belt solution was not suitable for this application — as the process has very specific demands — our engineering team analyzed all the different variables and created a conveyor belt from scratch. Twentebelt came up with a special and long-lasting plate belt that features a perforated belt surface that can be fitted with edge-plates. The self-supporting belt features a special ‘J’-profil that reduces the amount of blind spots and, as there is no welding involved in the manufacturing of this specific belt, there is no need for pickling and passivating. This reduces costs and ensures suitability for the application that involves direct food contact.

The purpose-engineered solution resulted in great improvements for our customer as it provided them with a way to increase their operational efficiency while at the same time reducing costs of maintenance.


The main challenge

Twentebelt needed to create a solution that was able to handle the challenging requirements of a dryer system while at the same time being efficient in terms of costs and performance. In order to remove several blind spots from the design, thus improving the overall efficiency of the installation, the additional supports that are standard in this type of conveyor belt needed to be eliminated. This created a challenging engineering task as it required the belt to be completely self-supporting without creating new blind-spots.


The solution

As mentioned, the main challenge that needed to be tackled was the elimination of the additional supports and reducing the related blind spots without compromising performance or flexibility. This was realized by engineering a special ‘J’-profil that serves as a strong support and creates a completely self-supporting belt structure without the need of welding. As the profil is constructed out of one piece of metal — a unibody design — it is much stronger in comparison with a profil that consists of separate parts that are assembled together. Combined with a heavy chain, the belt performs reliable and consistent making it a more reliable solution than its traditional counterpart. To improve the ease of maintenance the separate belt components, such as the edge-plates and the chain, can be assembled without the need of welding. This makes replacing those parts an easy process.

The main benefits of this solution:

Hygienic and self-supporting structure

The open structure of the conveyor belt allows widths up to 6000 mm (almost 20 feet). The flat surface of the belt offers ease of cleaning which can further reduce the costs of operation.

Optimal heat exchange

An open surface area between 0 and 60% allows the client to create the desired airflow. Furthermore, the perforations can be placed in several patterns and in numerous dimensions.

Customizable solution

As Twentebelt offers many choices in terms of material, width, strength and perforation pattern, this solution is suitable for virtually every drying process in virtually every industry.

 

With this solution we enabled our customer to utilize a system without additional supports which resulted in considerably lower operational costs. As the design eliminated the usual blind spots at the location of the additional supports the whole system became more efficient as there were no potatoes that did not dry properly. Furthermore, by eliminating the need of welding when replacing parts such as edge-plates, the costs of maintenance were further reduced.


More information

Do you want to learn more about this project or do you have a different demanding process and application that requires a unique and custom solution? Our engineers are ready to answer your questions and collaborate with you to create an optimal solution!

Click here to get in touch with our engineering department!

Twentebelt B.V.

Petroleumhavenstraat 1-3
7553 GS Hengelo
The Netherlands

Mailing address
P.O. Box 6
7550 AA Hengelo
The Netherlands

Tel. +31 (0)74 242 47 05
Fax +31 (0)74 243 16 59
sales@twentebelt.com

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