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Polyurethane acceptance increases productivity

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article image K-Redi Liner

Kinder & Co  attributes the achievement of increased productivity goals to the acceptance of polyurethane in bulk materials handling processes.

A recent industry report advised mining companies to focus more on improving productivity rather than just digging up bigger volumes of minerals. ABS data indicates that the output of minerals per hour worked in the sector fell by 56% between 2001-02 and 2011-12 while use of capital assets became 44% less productive.

Neil Kinder, CEO of Kinder & Co, a leading supplier to the bulk materials handling and conveyor industry observes that several of their customers have been pursuing increased productivity goals for some time.

However, the biggest impact on the achievement of increased productivity goals is the acceptance of polyurethane and composites as a replacement material to the more obvious choice of traditional steel or rubber in bulk materials handling processes. Neil explains that today’s engineers have been educated on the superior composite properties of polyurethane, and how crosslinking these polymer thermosets stabilises the matrix of the material.

The end result, according to Neil is a new breed of engineered polyurethane, which has a much lower density than steel and makes it ideal for use in lightweight structures, and areas that experience high levels of wear and abrasion.

With fewer interruptions due to maintenance, overall productivity targets are not affected as much as they would have been with the heavier steel materials, making a big difference to operational efficiencies.

This observed trend can be backed by Kinder & Co’s own performance figures with an average growth of 215% in spending on their polyurethane products for the last three financial years 2009 through to 2012.

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