Pneumatic Conveying System has Positive Impact on Environment

May 25, 2010 (PRLEAP.COM) Health News
Belleville, NJ, May 25, 2010 — After years of handling 70 tons of corn cob meal product per year with a combination of mechanical equipment and physical labor, Sam Pinto, Facilities Director at the Van Andel Institute (VAI), an independent bio-medical research institute, in Grand Rapids, MI, implements pneumatic conveying system to streamline the process at his facility.

Aware that the use of pneumatic conveyor systems was common in manufacturing industries to increase efficiency, reduce labor, and for ergonomic purposes Pinto "figured that we could use it in our industry because the principal is the still the same. You are moving material from one point to the other," he said.

Pinto wanted to replace the laborious task of handling incoming product where two staff members would spend approximately 3 hours a week taking delivery of 40 lb packages from a skid, then processing those packages into a central storage area where they were then dumped into a hopper that held approximately 300 lbs. After researching the feasibility of implementing a pneumatic conveying system, Pinto decided on a VAC-U-MAX.

VAC-U-MAX is the pioneer in vacuum technology including industrial vacuum cleaning solutions and pneumatic conveyor systems. The company has had many technology firsts, and specializes in the design and manufacture of pneumatic conveying systems and support equipment for the conveying, weighing, and batching of dry materials.

"We looked at a couple different vendors and VAC-U-MAX was significantly less cost than the others," he says.

After understanding the material characteristics, VAC-U-MAX designed a pneumatic conveying system that allowed the company to replace the 40 pound bags with 1000 lb bulk bags of the material which in itself saved VAI $17,000 dollars per year. Now, the entire process is automated, saving about 10 hours of labor per week.

"The newest system for removing the waste product from the facility has allowed us to gain some efficiency in the operation and save on trash disposal costs, but eliminating the product from the waste stream is what is exciting," Says Pinto. "It's not going into a landfill; it's being reused, which to me is exciting because when you start talking about the quantities that are being diverted from the landfill, it completes the process from a sustainability standpoint."

"The way we were doing it before put the waste into our regular waste stream. Now, with the pneumatic system, we have eliminated the product from the waste stream completely, reducing our regular waste by about 75 percent," Pinto says.

VAI partnered with a local company who picks up the container about every six weeks, turns it into compost and sells it as fertilizer to local farmers. "The product is organic and now it is being converted into a product that can be reused."

"Again, it's not so much that it has saved us several thousand dollars per year in waste cost," says Pinto, "but the positive impact it has on the environment."

For more information about how a VAC-U-MAX pneumatic conveying system can help with material handling or information about industrial vacuum cleaning solutions, write to them at 37 Rutgers Street, Belleville, NJ 07109; call (888)241-6992 or (973) 759-4600; e-mail; or visit their website