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Back to basics: What exactly is Separating?

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article image Tony Webber - What exactly is seperating?

Industry has many descriptions for the process of separating and it is subject to personal interpretation. Some industries are familiar with the terminology, whilst others would refer to it as screening.

Tony Webber, managing director of iBulk Solutions Pty Ltd , one of Australia’s leading separation technology companies can offer an informed understanding of the basics of the separating business.

“There always seems to be some confusion surrounding what exactly we are talking about when it comes to describing the process of separation and this tends to stem from that fact that there are a number of words that are frequently used to describe the process,” he said.

“Some industries are familiar with the terminology separating whilst others would speak of screening, but essentially they are one and the same.”

A short list of terms that are commonly used to describe the process of ‘Separating’ include Sieving / Sifting, Sorting Filtering, Separation / separating, Screening, and Sorting.

“In every case there are people who will not divert from their pet terminology,” explained Tony. “As a stakeholder in this industry it is essential to be flexible and adaptive to the way this process of sorting different particles into different sizes is referred.”

“For example, in the dry bulk solid industry the term filtering is not common as this is more applicable to solid / liquid separation.”

By looking at the type of process that is being performed through the application of one of the above it is likely the end user wishes to achieve an objective that could be: 

  • Drain and rinse 
  • Washing 
  • Size / sizing 
  • Dewater 
“Yet again, each of these terms is applicable to a specific industry and taking a cross section it would seem that we all agree that sizing is yet another list of methods including Grizzly Screening, Single or multiple deck screening / separating, Grading or Scalping,” said Tony.

“Originally, I set out to provide an insight into this veiled industry by providing a range of commonly used terminology in the hope of providing a starting point from which we can all clearly reference when we’re talking separating,” he added.

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