HUDCOAIR® AIR-SUPPORTED CONVEYOR

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The HudcoAir® Air Conveyor System

Hudco Industrial Products, Inc. is delighted to offer the revolutionary HudcoAir® Conveyor. The most efficient belt conveyor in the world is also the cleanest and requires the least maintenance.  The HudcoAir® Conveyor uses low-pressure air to support the loaded belt in place of traditional troughing rollers. This revolutionary concept minimizes friction, lowers power consumption, requires minimum maintenance, and is remarkably quiet and environmentally friendly. The HudcoAir® Conveyor consists of a specially built plenum pressurized by a low horsepower blower. The top surface of the plenum is designed with a precisely perforated trough to “cradle” the belt. As the pressurized air is released from the holes in the trough it creates a film that actually levitates the belt from frictional contact with the trough. In other words, the belt literally floats on air!

There is no limit to the bulk products that can be transported on a HudcoAir® Conveyor. Coal, sand, limestone, woodchips, fly ash, phosphate, cement and even iron ore can easily be transported. Movement of the belt is extremely smooth, quiet, safe and dust free while using less total horsepower than a conventional roller supported conveyor.

HudcoAir® Plenum with Air Return

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Dust-Free Material Conveying
    • The top covers on the HudcoAir® Conveyor are sealed to the plenum flange with a rubber gasket, a feature not possible with roller supported conveyors. Material load points are sealed to the top covers thereby eliminating dust at transfers. There is simply no clean up required as a result of spillage and dust emissions from a HudcoAir® Conveyor.
Eliminates Maintenance
    • The HudcoAir® Conveyor requires minimum maintenance on the drive mechanisms, head and tail pulleys and return idlers. By eliminating the troughing idlers, maintenance including lubrication and replacement is eliminated.
Reduced Energy Requirements
    • The HudcoAir® Conveyor operates with much less friction than  roller based conveyors therefore the horsepower per ton of material moved is reduced. Depending on the configuration of the conveyor, power savings of as much as 35% can be expected.
Reduced Noise Levels
    • Unless you are standing next to the drive assembly or the blower unit, the HudcoAir® is almost completely silent.
Inherently Safe
    • With the belt enclosed and no moving parts exposed, the HudcoAir® offers unmatched safety in the workplace.
Higher Inclination Angles
    • By eliminating the “wave” action inherent to roller supported conveyors, materials transported on a HudcoAir® Conveyor are very stable. This characteristic allows the use of higher inclination angles without product rollback. Shorter conveyor lengths can be used to facilitate products lifts. This saves belt length, horsepower and space.
Elimination of Tracking Problems
    • Tracking of the HudcoAir® Conveyor is principally determined by the loading characteristics. When product is loaded on to the center of the belt, gravity insures proper belt tracking. There are no provisions needed for tracking adjustments on the load sided of the HudcoAir®. If loading problems exist, Hudco will redesign the loading chute or feeder to insure material flow is centered.
Reversible Travel
    • The HudcoAir® does not suffer from the temperamental influence of rollers so it can easily be reversed with no adverse effects. As stated above, tracking is assured by center loading, therefore the belt configuration is highly symmetrical and subject to being easily reversible.
Increased Belt Life
    • By reducing the friction and flexing normally experienced with roller based conveyors belt tension is reduced allowing the HudcoAir® to operate with less expensive belts. Less friction and tension translates to longer belt life.
Easy Installation
    • Fully trained Hudco technicians are available to install the HudcoAir® Conveyor anywhere in the world. We can supply all the engineering, including structural and civil, for your project and install and startup the system.

The HudcoAir® Conveyor is the only conveyor available with a truly airtight seal between plenum segments. Furthermore, Hudco’s unique manufacturing method assures proper alignment and highly consistent belt tracking and support.

Fire Detection and Suppression

The HudcoAir® Conveyor can be fitted with fire detection and elimination technology. Once detected, a signal activates a sequence of water or chemical spray to eliminate the potential fire or explosion. Fire Breaks are also designed into the system at strategic locations.

Guaranteed Performance

The HudcoAir® Conveyor is custom designed for your application to insure perfect performance. Before shipment, every HudcoAir® Conveyor is assembled in our facility and tested. When your conveyor arrives, each component is match marked for fast, efficient assembly. Additionally, we both know your HudcoAir® will work properly because we floated a belt on it before we shipped it to you!

Retrofit Existing Conveyors

The HudcoAir® Conveyor can be retrofitted to existing conveyor structures. Simply remove the troughing idlers and install the HudcoAir® Plenum to the existing structure and reuse the existing drive and return system. The HudcoAir® Retrofit is designed to be completely compatible with CEMA conveyor idlers.

Partial Retrofit

Since the HudcoAir® is CEMA compatible; you can retrofit any section of your existing conveyor. Start at either end or in the middle and install the HudcoAir® where you need it most. Later, the balance of the conveyor can be retrofitted. Standard HudcoAir® plenums are manufactured in lengths up to 20 feet.

One Conveyor Profile

The plenum profile of the HudcoAir® is the same for a new or retrofit conveyor.  Competitive retrofit plenums are not designed to support long conveyor runs. Short transfer points may work, but problems will occur if the retrofit is extended for several hundred feet. The HudcoAir® is the most tested and proven plenum available. Remember, we test every unit before shipment, so there is no risk with the HudcoAir®!

The HudcoAir® Conveyor can be retrofitted to existing conveyor structures. Simply remove the troughing idlers and install the HudcoAir® Plenum to the existing structure and reuse the existing drive and return system. The HudcoAir® Retrofit is designed to be completely compatible with CEMA conveyor idlers.

Partial Retrofit

Since the HudcoAir® is CEMA compatible; you can retrofit any section of your existing conveyor. Start at either end or in the middle and install the HudcoAir® where you need it most. Later, the balance of the conveyor can be retrofitted. Standard HudcoAir® plenums are manufactured in lengths up to 20 feet.

One Conveyor Profile

The plenum profile of the HudcoAir® is the same for a new or retrofit conveyor. Competitive retrofit plenums are not designed to support long conveyor runs. Short transfer points may work, but problems will occur if the retrofit is extended for several hundred feet. The HudcoAir® is the most tested and proven plenum available. Remember, we test every unit before shipment, so there is no risk with the HudcoAir®!

Load Cells
    • The HudcoAir® Conveyor can be modified with load cells to accurately weigh transported product.
Sample Systems
    • The HudcoAir® is designed to accept product-sampling systems.
Coating
    • Hudco offers a variety of coating options including epoxy /urethane, powder coating, Zinga* and hot dip galvanizing.
Stainless Steel Construction
    • For highly corrosive environments, Hudco can manufacture every component of the HudcoAir® from select grades of Stainless Steel.
Fire Detection and Elimination
    • The HudcoAir® Conveyor can be fitted with fire detection and elimination technology. Once detected, a signal activates a sequence of water or chemical spray to eliminate the potential fire or explosion.  Fire Breaks are also designed into the system at strategic locations.

* Zinga is a one-component anti-corrosion zinc coating system. Its unique formula provides environmentally safe cathodic protection to steel comparable with hot-dip galvanizing.

Case #1:

A major (PRB) coal fired power generation facility in the Midwest was faced with replacing a worn out conventional conveyor. The unit was 507 feet long, 42” belt width with a 69’ vertical rise. The design capacity was 750 tons per hour. Spillage and dust from 7 vibrating feeders generated significant housekeeping chores. After a comprehensive cost study, the plant decided to install a HudcoAir® to retrofit their existing conveyor. Hudco Industrial Products, Inc. handled the entire project including installation and start up.

The project was completed on time and the performance of the conveyor has been spectacular. After observing the HudcoAir® perform through one of the coldest winters in 25 years, the plant had Hudco install a second HudcoAir®. These HudcoAir® Conveyors have reliably supported the entire fuel requirements for the 1,100 megawatt plant since 2001 with the following operational improvements.

    • The daily clean up duties have been reduced by over 75%.
    • There are no spillage or dust emissions from any point on the conveyors, including the 14 vibrating feeders.
    • The HudcoAir® Conveyors deliver 1,500-tons per hour using approximately 30% less horsepower per ton. The electricity the plant saves on material handling can now be sold. Every kilowatt saved on power consumption is translated directly into company profits!
    • Eliminated roller inventory
    • Minimized fire and explosion risks
    • Improved workplace safety

 

Case #2

Dust and spillage problems at a large (PRB) coal fired generation facility in Southeast were improved with the installation of a HudcoAir® Reclaim Conveyor. The 48” wide x 432’ HudcoAir® was installed to replace a conventional system receiving PRB coal from 28 vibratory feeders. The conventional idler supported system required the use of over 800’ of skirt and belt seals that required constant maintenance and replacement. In addition to the HudcoAir® Conveyor, each vibratory feeder was fitted with a WearSpan® Lined CenterLoad® Chute. This arrangement totally eliminated the need for over 800’ of skirts and seals! The Hudco CenterLoad® Chute places the PRB coal onto the center of the belt without dust or spillage. Operational improvements include:

    • Drastic reduction in daily clean-up duties related to the HudcoAir® System
    • Elimination of coal spillage and dust emissions
    • Elimination of seal skirt maintenance and replacement
    • Elimination of idler maintenance and replacement
    • Minimized fire and explosion risks
    • Improved workplace safety