Industries & Applications
What is dredging?
Dredging is the removal/extraction of material from a water bed, such as the sea, a harbour, or a lagoon and moving it to another location. Dredging can also be undertaken in a quarry. Here, sand is removed from the bed of a lake, and pumped to a processing plant.
Dredging is an alternative method of extracting material and is only generally suitable for sand quarries. Dredging is carried out by a vessel called a dredger.
The role of pumps in quarry dredging
Pumps play a vital role in the process of dredging. Mounted to the dredger the pump is submerged with the agitator spinning. The agitator churns the sand up before it is drawn into the pump along with the water and to the impeller. The impeller will then pump the sand before via a pipe to the bank and to a sand plant for processing.
What type of pump should I be choosing for dredging?
Depending on the application and the style of the dredger, Atlantic would recommend either a Dragflow submersible dredging pump or a SlurryPro dredger pump, both of which we supply.
Where can I purchase a quarry dredger?
In addition to pumps, Atlantic Pumps also supply Audex Dragflow Dredgers. Perfect for quarries, Audex Dragflow Dredgers are particularly suitable for using in complex and hard to reach environments. Used in Europe in sites such as ports, quarries and mines, these small, powerful dredgers can be used to mount pumps and dredging equipment and can be operated in shallow waters. The dredgers are also remote controlled which ensures the operators’ safety should they be working in the presence of acidic or corrosive substances. Audex Dragflow Dredgers can also be transported and assembled more easily than larger dredges which in turn provides the owner with savings both in terms of time and start-up costs.
Companies building in urban areas near harbours or estuaries often favour sourcing aggregate from dredging over quarries. This is due to easier and quicker access to the aggregate plus lower transportation costs. Over 20% of the UK’s supply of sand and gravel is dredged from the seabed.
As land-based quarrying comes under pressure from environmental and planning restrictions, this marine resource is growing in importance in the construction supply industry. Large-scale marine dredging is achieved by a fleet of purpose-built aggregate dredging ships, operating around the clock in all weathers.
At the heart of the dredging process are powerful electric-powered centrifugal pumps, capable of drawing sand and gravel in large volumes from the seabed, which can be up to 60m below the ship. In addition to these huge pumps, slurry pumps are required to pump the excess water back to the sea. These pumps need to be very reliable and capable of handling abrasive fluids. An ideal application for SlurryPro pumps. SlurryPro pumps can be found on a number of dredgers in the UK including the Southampton-based vessel ‘Clarissa’ which is owned by Aggregate Industries and on a vessel owned by CEMEX UK Marine, also based in Southampton.
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