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What Is a Screen Conveyor?

By B. Turner
Updated May 17, 2024
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A screen conveyor is a heavy-duty machine designed to sort materials quickly and efficiently. It consists of a long belt made from a metal screen or wire mesh. The holes in the screen allow small objects to fall through to an area below the belt, while larger objects continue along on top to the end of the belt. In many applications, the screen conveyor acts as a portable factory used in mining, construction and land clearing operations. Other facilities maintain more permanent screen conveyor units to sort trash or recycled materials.

Depending on the applications, a screen conveyor may consist of a single screen, or layers of mesh belts placed one atop the other. On layered units, the size of the holes in the screens decreases from the top to the bottom layer, which helps sort materials by size. On all screen conveyors, the size of the holes used on the belt must be carefully selected based on the materials being processed and the project goals.

A screen conveyor can be equipped with a vibration mechanism, which helps to more effectively sort and sift the materials. These belts can also be inclined so that materials move more quickly. Inclined belts also allow heavier materials to travel along the belt with less stress to the conveyor's operating mechanisms. Businesses can choose from both standard and customized screen conveyor models to meet the needs of different applications.

These machines are widely used in the trash and recycling industries, particularly for materials like construction waste or concrete. Small objects pass along the belt and fall through the screen, while larger materials travel to the end of the belt. A crusher or compactor is often used at the end of the belt to reduce the size of these materials before they are placed in the landfill. Crushing machines can also transform large concrete or rocks into small pieces of aggregate, which can be reused in new concrete or paving work. When used in conjunction with a metal detector, the screen conveyor is also an effective tool for recycling valuable metals.

A screen conveyor also plays an important role on many mining sites. As miners extract metal or gems from the earth, they transfer them to the screen conveyor. Small rocks and dirt fall through the screens, while ore and gems travel to the end of the belt for further processing. In some applications, these machines allow small particles of gold or other valuables to fall through to processing areas below the belt, while larger rocks and non-valuable materials continue to the end of the belt for disposal or further processing.

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