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Plant Conveyor and Systems

Jul 2

What is a Plant Conveyor?

In-plant conveyors are used in many industries and environments that require efficient movement of materials.

Plant conveyor systems are vital in modern industrial settings for efficient and quick transport of bulk materials. This allows plants to be productive, and profitably.

Conveyor systems can be used to transport a variety of materials, from small flat distances up through long distances. Some systems may include integrated applications, such as bins or hoppers, silos and bunkers, transfer chutes, bins or hoppers, feeders, silos, bunkers and feeders.

Every conveyor system has its own needs and there are many types of conveyors available to suit those needs. There are many types of conveyors: chain conveyors and pneumatic conveyors; belt conveyors.

Every application is different, but Carmaky Engineering specialises in belt conveyors for the mining, minerals processing, power stations, bulk handling and bulk handling industries.

These environments make it critical for the operation of the plant to have a conveyor system that is efficient.

Belt Conveyor Systems

Belt conveyors take different forms and may function differently, but generally this class of conveyor is made up of pulley driven belts (or conveyor belts) which use friction to transport materials in a continuous motion.

When moving bulk materials, belt conveyors offer several advantages over other types of conveying systems. These are some of the benefits:

  • It's a cost-efficient method to transport bulk materials long distances.
  • Material is transported with very little degradation
  • The conveyor can move materials along an arc or at elevation.
  • You can load materials on the conveyor at any point along its path.

These benefits are only a few of the many advantages belt conveyors offer. They can be equipped with a range of integrated systems that can accommodate different situations, materials, and needs. These include:

  • You can have the moving surface open and visible, or enclosed.
  • For unloading tippers at various points along the travel path, you can include it.
  • Separators are possible to be combined for sorting operations
  • You can also integrate weigh belt sections for weighing
  • To provide extra support when climbing an incline, you can attach cleats to the belt.

You have many options, so it is important to take into account these things when designing and choosing a belt conveyor.

Important Considerations

A conveyor system's primary considerations should be the material that will be transported, the route to take, and any constraints or space restrictions. These considerations will inform the design of the system, and one will immediately see whether the design will be complex or not.


The physical properties of the material and the requirements for handling are key factors. These properties should be considered:

  • What form does the material take (Hard / soft / discreet units or continuous 'flow'(sand etc)
  • What size and weight are individual units and is that consistent
  • How abrasive are the materials?
  • Preservation requirements ie. Protection against breaking/decomposing
  • Coverage requirements

Transport Route

There are several factors to be aware of when considering the route that the material must travel.

  • Length of travel
  • Changes in elevation or curves
  • Loading and unloading points
  • Integrated systems (weight measurement, sorting)


Pre-existing infrastructure, or the environment will most likely limit the ability to construct a conveyor system. These considerations are:

  • Space constraints. Space constraints.
  • Pre-existing operations. Does the conveyor route have to be able to travel around other infrastructure? Or must it be integrated with existing operations?


Additional considerations

The primary considerations determine the basic form and function of the conveyor system. The system must meet certain criteria to be functional.

  • Safety. Safety must be considered in the construction and operation of any system.
  • It is cost-effective to build
  • Energy efficiency and power consumption.
  • Robustness is a key feature of good design. Material handling is very abrasive. Equipment must be designed accordingly.
  • Reliability. Reliability. To realize the benefits, the system has to be reliable. This includes careful design and integration of transfer chutes and overall system control design as well as PLC programming.
  • Maintenance. Maintenance is necessary for all systems, even the most reliable. It is therefore important to make sure that maintenance is easy.
  • Brownfield projects require tie-in and shutdown planning. This planning should be done from the design phase to minimize disruption to ongoing operations during implementation.
  • Use of standardised parts

Conveyor Design

Designing a conveyor system is a time when efficiency and cost effectiveness are key goals. While these are all important, they become more important as the system is developed.

The following interrelated factors, based on current knowledge, affect the cost effectiveness and efficiency a conveyor system or system:

  • Power demand
  • Idler spacing
  • Belt velocity
  • Belt width, type, and class
  • Conveyors with dynamic performance

The ratio of influence of each of these factors on the desired outcomes is not straight forward as it depends on conveyor parameters such as: horizontal length, vertical profile, capacity, and material conveyed. The design and optimization tools used in the design may not be uniform.


What We Offer

We supply plant conveyors and systems that can be used to transport capital efficiently, are fit-for-purpose and reliable.

The Carmaky design staff works closely with clients to understand their system needs. Our team includes constructability experts, and we work closely with client operations and construction teams to plan critical tie-ins and commissioning activities to ensure minimal disruption to operations. We provide exceptional leadership in HAZOP management and risk management.

Our team can provide complete solutions and peace-of-mind to our clients on every aspect of plant conveyor design and implementation.

Our plant system expertise includes:

  • Belt conveyors – elevated, enclosed and curved
  • Transfer chutes & structures
  • Bins, hoppers, silos, bunkers
  • Feeders
  • Dust control
  • Modular electrical room
  • Equipment and systems for ancillary purposes

Plant Conveyor and Systems

Carmaky Services