Design of an experimental apparatus to analyse bagasse behaviour in a chute

Sethuraman, Prakash Narayanaswamy (2012) Design of an experimental apparatus to analyse bagasse behaviour in a chute. Masters by Research thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


Pressure feeder chutes are pieces of equipment used in sugar cane crushing to increase the amount of cane that can be put through a mill. The continuous pressure feeder was developed with the objective to provide a constant feed of bagasse under pressure to the mouth of the crushing mills. The pressure feeder chute is used in a sugarcane milling unit to transfer bagasse from one set of crushing rolls to a second set of crushing rolls.

There have been many pressure feeder chute failures in the past. The pressure feeder chute is quite vulnerable and if the bagasse throughput is blocked at the mill rollers, the pressure build-up in the chute can be enormous, which can ultimately result in failure.

The result is substantial damage to the rollers, mill and chute construction, and downtimes of up to 48 hours can be experienced.

Part of the problem is that the bagasse behaviour in the pressure feeder chute is not understood well. If the pressure feeder chute behaviour was understood, then the chute geometry design could be modified in order to minimise risk of failure. There are possible avenues for changing pressure feeder chute design and operations with a view to producing more reliable pressure feeder chutes in the future.

There have been previous attempts to conduct experimental work to determine the causes of pressure feeder chute failures. There are certain guidelines available, however pressure feeder chute failures continue. Pressure feeder chute behaviour still remains poorly understood.

This thesis contains the work carried out between April 14th 2009 and October 10th 2012 that focuses on the design of an experimental apparatus to measure forces and visually observe bagasse behaviour in an attempt to understand bagasse behaviour in pressure feeder chutes and minimise the risk of failure.

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ID Code: 61026
Item Type: QUT Thesis (Masters by Research)
Supervisor: Kent, Geoff & Plaza, Floren
Keywords: bagasse; chute; pressure feeder chute, chute failures; experimental apparatus, two roll entry mill, two roll exit mill
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Past > Schools > School of Engineering Systems
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Deposited On: 30 Jun 2013 23:50
Last Modified: 10 Sep 2015 02:22

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