Choosing the right silo: Sliding-frame versus live-bottom

Silos are a common fixture around many materials handling facilities, but knowing the most effective type for your particular industry is essential. 

When it comes to storage equipment, there aren't a lot of solutions that have the usage history and versatility of silos. They're a common and unassuming feature of many wastewater and other industrial facilities, but the truth is that each particular site has different requirements.

It is important to understand the variations in silo technology, and which system is right for each type of facility. The most significant difference between versions of SPIRAC's rectangular and round silos lies in the bottom, with sliding-frame and live-bottom being two distinct options. Which is the right choice for your material handling system?

Which silo type is the right choice for your material handling system?

Sliding-frame silos

Available in both the rectangular and round silo configuration, the SPIRAC sliding-frame is designed to keep bulk material buildup that can cause potential blockages at the bottom of the silo. The hydraulically powered frame is designed to break up any "bridges" - collected material that can gather and solidify over the extraction screw - and help direct that substance toward a discharge point in the silo.

An effective choice for facilities that frequently handle non-free-flowing materials, including solid waste, wood chips and dewatered sludge, the SPIRAC sliding-frame silo features a simple operation with few moving parts. That means your maintenance concerns should be minimised, operation is exceptionally reliable and power consumption remains low. 

Live-bottom silos

For facilities that regularly handle the most challenging sticky materials, SPIRAC's live-bottom silo may be a more suitable option. The wastewater industry in particular may find these devices to be effective - in fact they're custom designed with storage, transfer and outloading of dewatered sludge in mind. 

Unlike the sliding-frame silo, a live-bottom features multiple spiral screws - usually from two to eight depending on the size and intended use. Running side-by-side, the movement of the screws ensures material bridges, and blockages are unable to form. 

Similar to the sliding-frame, live-bottom silos run at a very low RPM, ensuring minimum wear and maintenance is required. Through normal operation, inspection of the units should only be required every 5-10 years, with the components themselves lasting as long as 20 years. 

Need to know more about silos?

SPIRAC's silos - both sliding-frame and live-bottom - are available up to a size of 1,000 cubic metres, in high-spec mild or stainless steel. Given the nature of their use, corrosion protection is also a feature, with a range of specifications available to suit many industries. 

For more information about the best silos for your facility, speak to SPIRAC today

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N.B. The information contained in this entry is provided by SPIRAC, and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

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