Feeder hoppers are large containers that can be shaped like cones or pyramids and that are used in industrial processes. They handle bulk material that can flow, including seeds, gravel, nuts, and even dust, dispensing the material within from the bottom when the need to do so arises. They hold and measure out bulk material as necessary and so they’re indispensable in various industries.
They’re typically made of steel and are an important asset for industrial processes that use additional methods of controlling air pollution. There are various designs of feeder hoppers, with each having a few pros and cons. Take time to find the right feeder for your industrial needs so that you can take advantage of having one when you pick one that does the job perfectly.
Screw Feeder Hoppers
The first type of feeder hopper you’ll come across is a screw feeder hopper. This is a feeder hopper that’s designed to meter bulk materials in industries at a controlled feed rate. The typical setup of a screw feeder hopper involves an inlet that’s always flood loaded and that’s typically mounted directly to a storage device like a silo, bin, or hopper. Design parameters are used to control the amount of material that’s discharged by the screw hopper. The feed that’s desired influences the design that the screw feeder will be made in. As such, you can find conical screw feeders, progressive pitch screw feeders, and mass flow screw feeders.
Some pros of screw feed hoppers include the fact that these feeder hoppers can handle a wide range of feed rates and materials. The feeder may also be easy to clean by disassembling it from the non-process side.
Some of the cons of screw feeders are that fine and adhesive materials can build up inside the feeder and restrict flow. The moving parts can also wear out fast and need regular maintenance and replacement.
Vibratory Feeder Hoppers
Another type of feeder hopper you’re going to hear about is the vibratory feeder hopper. This is a feeder hopper that’s equipped with a vibrating discharge tray or tube. Materials flow into the tray or tube and get carried forward by the vibration of the tube or tray. The volumetric throughput is typically controlled by altering the frequency and amplitude of the vibrations.
Some pros that this kind of feeder hopper offers include the fact that this feeder hopper can handle extremely high or low feed rates. It handles bulk material gently and also provides a gentle handling of the material. This feeder hopper consumes low power and has a low installation cost when compared to other types.
As for the cons of this type of feeder hopper, the main one is that certain materials will generate dust as a result of the vibration. It’s also impossible to get positive material extraction from this type of feeder hopper.
Belt Feeder Hoppers
Next, we have belt feeder hoppers which move bulk material in a continuous flow via a moving conveyor belt that features a weighted section. This feeder hopper is paired with a conveyor belt to ensure that bulk material is moved from one point to another relying on conveyor belts. This type of feeder hopper will typically be used for abrasive, fine, and fairly light free flowing materials. This type of feeder hopper is best suited to stockpiled bulk material or material that’s loaded at an uncontrolled rate.
The main advantage of this type of feeder hopper is that it can handle a wide variety of materials in a reliable manner. Belt feeder hoppers can also help avoid the occurrence of partial loading in terms of various kinds of bulk material.
One of the disadvantages of this type of feeder hopper is that it may operate at considerably lower speeds than others. This means that it’s not efficient when time is an important consideration as a result of something such as a particular bulk material being volatile.
Rotary Feeder Hoppers
The final type of feeder hopper you should know about is the rotary feeder hopper. This is a feeder hopper that’s typically used alongside rotary feeders that handle dry pellets, crystals, granules, or free-flowing powders. From the food industry to the chemical industry, there’s a wide range of applications for this type of feeder hopper.
The main advantage of this type of feeder hopper is that it can help a lot with pollution control for applications such as textiles, tobacco, grain, and paint. Even with varying pressure differentials and high temperatures, this hopper feeder works well to lower pollution.
A disadvantage presented by this feeder hopper is that it has a number of moving parts against which bulk material is thrown at high velocities. This means that there’s a higher likelihood of damage and the need for frequent replacements.
Feeder hoppers make the industrial processes of bulk material handling safer and more efficient, especially when paired with the right accessories and set up well. In order to pick the right feeder hopper design, you should consider a few things. These include the type of material you’re handling as well as necessary safety precautions. Failure to do this may result in danger, pollution, loss of material, and improper packing, among other issues.
Talk to the engineers at Sodimate to ensure that you get the right feeder hopper and other bulk handling equipment that you need. Thanks to years of experience in the industry, it’s possible to get the right material and design of a feeder hopper suggested to you. This will help improve your industry in a number of ways, enabling you to enjoy the best outcome in your particular industry.