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Bulk Handling Problem Solving & Optimisation
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Bulk Handling Problem Solving & Optimisation

2-Day Training Course: A Masterclass Focused on Proven Flow Principles & Practices. Intensive training for effective design & troubleshooting for handling bulk solids in silos, stockpiles, feeders & transfer chutes – strategies for alleviating costly flow problems, & proven techniques to design equipment to improve efficiency, safety & reliability

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Learning Objectives

  • Review common flow problems (eg. bridging, ratholing, flooding, segregation)
  • Understand silo/hopper/stockpile flow patterns (funnel, mass, expanded flow)
  • Discuss bulk solids flow properties and their use in design and troubleshooting
  • Select proper bulk solids feeders and solve costly on-going problems
  • Design gravity reclaim stockpiles to obtain maximum reclaim capacity
  • Review an example bulk material flow properties test report (FPTR)
  • Design a storage vessel with a proven step-by-step procedure
  • Examine poor vs effective transfer chute designs to improve flow
  • Learn about segregation mechanisms and implement practical solutions

About the Course

This course provides participants with a fundamental grounding in the key areas of bulk solids handling equipment selection, design, and troubleshooting.

Strategies for alleviating costly flow problems in silos, stockpiles, feeders, and transfer chutes are presented, as well as proven techniques to design solids handling equipment so that it operates efficiently, safely, and reliably from the start.

A review of bulk material flow fundamentals will be presented, including common flow problems, types of flow patterns in equipment and how flow properties of bulk solids are measured. Feeder design and troubleshooting techniques are also discussed, with an emphasis on mining and mineral handling applications.

The course participant will learn how to design and solve problems with gravity reclaim stockpiles handling either free-flowing or cohesive bulk solids. Strategies for reliably and safely handling fine powders will be presented, along with proven techniques for designing transfer chutes to prevent plugging, abrasive wear, dust generation and spillage. Case studies for effective stockpile and chute designs will be covered.

An example flow properties test report (FPTR) will be reviewed to help the learner understand common terminology and how to interpret test results that may apply for their bulk material handling applications.

Segregation mechanisms will be discussed, as well as practical methods available to minimise or eliminate any negative effects of segregation.

Who Will Benefit

Course Level: Intermediate/Advanced

Those who will benefit from this course include those involved with designing, selecting, troubleshooting, maintaining, or purchasing bulk solids handling equipment, such as:

  • Plant and project managers
  • Operation or process managers
  • Project and maintenance engineers
  • Unit operators and superintendents
  • Personnel new to the field of solids handling


“Very interesting. Presenter was very knowledgeable and used many relevant practical examples”
Technical Manager), HIsmelt

“Course was outstanding! All content was relevant. Couldn’t have asked for more”
Process Engineer, Rio Tinto

Terms & Conditions

To read the training course terms and conditions read more here

Course Outline

Review of bulk solids fundamentals

  • Why liquids ‘flow well’ and bulk solids often ‘do not’
  • Examples of bulk material flow problems and their impacts
  • Flow problems (eg. bridging, ratholing, flooding, rate limitations, segregation)
  • Flow patterns (eg. funnel flow, mass flow, expanded flow)
  • Benefits of effective flow pattern selection/implementation

Activity 1: Workshop/quiz for review of bulk solids handling fundamentals

Solids flow properties and application to design/troubleshooting

  • Key properties of bulk solids needed for equipment design
  • Coefficient of sliding friction for hopper and chute design
  • Cohesive strength for selecting hopper outlet size
  • Bulk density and permeability for calculating hopper outlet size
  • Discussion of influences of moisture, temperature, and particle size

Activity 2: Workshop/quiz for flow properties measurement

Bulk solids feeders design/selection/troubleshooting

  • Key properties required for feeder design and troubleshooting
  • Features of effective screw feeders
  • Design of belt and apron feeder interfaces
  • Rotary valve features and venting

Activity 3: Workshop/quiz for bulk solids feeder design

Gravity reclaim stockpile design

  • Stockpile flow patterns and common flow problems
  • Maximising gravity reclaim and ‘live’ capacity
  • Effective stockpile feeder designs

Activity 4: Case study for increasing stockpile ‘live’ capacity with cohesive ore

Example flow properties test report (FPTR)

  • Understanding a material characterisation results report
  • Review of terminology and interpretation of test results

Storage vessel design example

  • Review of common storage vessel design requirements
  • Step-by-step silo design procedure
  • Presentation of multiple solutions, with discussion of pros/cons of each option

Transfer chute design basics

  • Review of problems in transfer chutes
  • How to prevent plugging and ensure material throughput
  • Features to minimise abrasive wear, particle attrition, and dust emissions
  • DEM (Discrete Element Modelling) example analyses illustrating flow through chutes

Activity 5: Case study for handling sticky and abrasive ore in a transfer chute

Common segregation mechanisms and solutions

  • Understand common segregation mechanisms
  • Solutions to segregation problems
  • ‘Golden rules’ of sampling bulk solids

On-site & in-house training

Deliver this course how you want, where you want, when you want – and save up to 40%! 8+ employees seeking training on the same topic?

Talk to us about an on-site/in-house & customised solution.


Still have a question?

Sushil Kunwar
Training Consultant
+61 (0)2 9080 4395

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