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What Is a Stacker Conveyor?

By B. Turner
Updated May 17, 2024
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A stacker conveyor is a large piece of industrial equipment used to sort bulk materials into piles. These machines are designed to transport heavy materials, such as earth, rocks, gravel, and metals. Each stacker conveyor consists of a steel frame used to support a metal or composite conveyor belt. The end of the conveyor is known as a boom, and some boom models are designed to rotate while others are fixed. The primary purpose of a stacker conveyor is to keep bulk materials organized into neat piles, which helps to improve speed and efficiency on the job site.

When using a stacker conveyor, crews use excavators and other equipment to dump bulk materials onto one end of the belt. The belt carries these materials up to the boom, where they fall off to form a pile on the ground. As work progresses, operators adjust the angle of the conveyor to raise or lower the boom as the size of the pile changes. By keeping the end of the boom relatively close to the top of a pile, crews can minimize dust and maintain neat, organized piles.

Once the piles of materials have reached the desired level, workers can move the stacker conveyor to another spot on the job site. These machines may be positioned on a system of rails, wheels or tracks. Units without these types of transport systems may require a crane to reposition. If the machine is equipped with a rotating boom, the crews can simply rotate the boom to a different position to create piles in another area.

Manufacturers produce several types of stacker conveyors to suit the needs of different applications. Each unit is rated based on the volume of materials it can move within a given time, generally in tons per hour. The length and adjustability of the conveyor also varies, as does the range of angles that the boom can be set to. Buyers should also consider the control systems used on these machines, and whether the unit is relatively portable, or designed for use in a fixed location.

The stacker conveyor is often used in the mining industry, where it allows crews to sort excavated materials into piles for further processing. These machines are also used in roadwork and earth-clearing operations, where they enable workers to temporarily store fill dirt in piles before using it to refill excavated areas. The stacker conveyor also helps workers store waste materials to keep them out of the way until they can be removed from the job site.

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