Mitigating fire risk with Multotec’s robust flame-resistant rubber screen panels

Multotec has developed a range of self-extinguishing flame-resistant rubber screen panels to mitigate the risk of fire.

Multotec has developed a range of flame-resistant rubber screen panels that self-extinguishes in under 60 seconds, thereby significantly reducing the risk of fire and the associated loss of valuable production time, plant and staff safety hazards.

Multotec responded to a challenge facing iron ore producers in Australia by developing a rubber screen media solution that negates the risk of fires associated with hot work on screen decks.

Shawn Faba, Product Manager: Screening Media at Multotec, explains that while the solution was developed to meet the stringent performance and safety requirements of the Australian mining industry, other mining operations across the world would also benefit from its adoption.

Multotec’s flame-resistant panels have been scientifically developed in collaboration with international academic institutions and raw material suppliers. The product has been tested under controlled laboratory conditions, certified accreditation trials, as well as on a number of sites in real world conditions.

Significant potential benefits

“When we consider an interruption to any production environment, the downtime could easily translate in revenue losses that run into millions of dollars. For example, in Australia, mining houses are tonnage-driven, meaning when you have unplanned downtime of two hours, it could translate to the loss of millions. Fires in the plant can shut down whole modules for weeks at a time. Australia’s miners operate in campaigns – for instance, they’ll operate for three months and then they’ll do maintenance. They don’t stop haphazardly.

“Our product has undergone rigorous testing and has been confirmed to operate continuously to fit existing shutdown campaigns, meeting the mining industry’s stringent requirements. Ensuring high-quality equipment is essential to minimise downtime. This is especially beneficial for plants that operate around the clock, as interruptions can be costly and disruptive,” says Faba.

Developed with safety in mind

“To make the rubber screen panels flame-resistant, we modified the chemical composition of the raw materials used to manufacture the panels. However, the flame-resistant screen panels can be used without compromising on efficiency, compared to conventional rubber screen media,” adds Faba.

He notes that Multotec is proud of the fact that its flame-resistant rubber screen media has received international acceptance and is in use at processing plants of some of the world’s leading iron producers. The flame-resistant screen panels can be used in all screening applications for a variety of duties, both wet and dry.

Fit for any screening-related application

“While we currently supply the flame-resistant rubber screen panels for iron ore screening applications in Western Australia, these panels can also be used in any screening-related application. They can be used extensively in all mineral processing applications, such as coal, iron ore, copper, platinum, diamonds, manganese, and zinc, among others.

In addition to providing the greatest level of fire safety, Multotec’s flame-resistant panels also increase optimal screening performance and plant availability, are available in hard (PD70) and soft (PD45) durometer rubber, and remain robust and extremely reliable under the toughest mining conditions.

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