New services and products

SBM presents 'Technikum' and technologies

S‌BM took the introduction of its new service offer ’SBM Technikum’ rendering rock examinations to optimise production processes as the opportunity to assess the current business performance and to present new processes and products.

For almost ten years, the headquarter of the company SBM Mineral Processing GmbH has been in Oberweis near Gmunden in Upper Austria. A total of 135 employees are working in management, administration, sales, and especially in central product R&D for the two SBM business fields mineral processing & recycling as well as mobile and stationary concrete mixing plants. There are another 35 employees at the business location Liezen, where all SBM plants are assembled by about 70 employees of the sister company MFL.

SBM Technikum opens for everybody

The rock laboratory ’SBM Technikum’ also situated in Oberweis since 2017 continues the important basic research that has begun 35 years ago with implementing and documenting in-house rock examinations. Testing procedures for the processing-relevant mechanical properties have been continuously refined. Thanks to major investments in the equipment, today especially developed laboratory crushers can simulate crushing processes with horizontal and vertical impact crushers, roll crushers, hammer mills, and jaw crushers; and material-specific crushing results in real-use can be predicted exactly.

All test results of the most diverse primary materials have been digitalised since 2006 by means of the SBM in-house software ILUAS (’Intelligente Labor- und Auswerte-Software’ – intelligent laboratory and evaluation software). This continuously updated and advanced intelligent software today also edits all test protocols in the Technikum including corresponding reference data from the data set comprising already thousands of examinations. Additionally, ILUAS displays the overall performance of complex mineral processing plants in clear flowsheets and shows the possibilities for optimisations caused by selected alterations of individual parameters or components already in a very early planning stage. This makes this software an essential internal tool for the SBM product developers, quickens the customer-specific design of complete processing lines, and also supplies important basics for substantiated order processing (projected performance, pricing, etc.).

To broaden its service package SBM is now concentrating the formerly mostly project-specific services under the label ’SBM Technikum’ – and makes them available to a wide range of interested parties via the SBM sales department and the network of international sales partners. Based upon material provided by clients (Ø 50 kg), well-experienced engineers carry out crushing trials and further appropriate examinations (for example moisture / density measurements, crushability / abrasiveness tests, etc.). The ILUAS-assisted analysis then provides important information to improve the product quality (grain shape, grain size distribution, etc.) or to optimise the production process (energy input, wear, etc.). Further services offered by the SBM Technikum are on-site inspections with an especially equipped laboratory bus. Subsequently, individually prepared dossiers show possible weak points and provide substantiated proposals to optimise existing processes.

Successful business course

“In spite of all difficulties we look back on a very successful year 2021”, said Managing Director DI Erwin Schneller at the beginning of the SBM management update about the general business trend and the development in the individual sectors. With about 125 million € annual sales the company is again expecting more than 30 % increase in sales and income for 2021 in comparison with the ’Corona year’ 2020 which was closed with a total of about 90 million € sales and a 20 %-increase compared to 2019. “Once again we profit from our broad positioning as a full-package supplier in the sectors mineral processing and concrete mixing technology. In both sectors that today each represent half of our business activities, the markets have proven very robust.”

“In 2018, we produced only just 31 mobile mineral processing plants per year – by the end of October 2021, we have already produced 84 machines,” illustrates Helmut Haider, SBM Sales Manager Mineral Processing the tangible success caused by the new orientation of SBM’s mobile sector started about two years ago. Apart from manufacturing new models in the high-volume track-mobile machine classes, Haider attributes this mainly to the successful organisation of an end-user-orientated and extensive network of distributors.

In the field stationary mineral processing SBM will also double its sales of the previous year of about 10 million €: “As a flexible mechanical engineering company we definitively profit from the concentration in the market. We often observe that some of our international competitors only deploy their resources for major projects starting at about 20 million € investment volume. For our slim and efficient organisation this opens numerous opportunities regarding upgrades resp. new construction of complete works – from designing via manufacturing components to assembly,” explains Managing Director Erwin Schneller.

System planning 2.0

Particularly regarding the customised construction of complex plants SBM is relying more and more on further computer-assisted technologies in addition to the already mentioned ILUAS software. A 3D printer provides true-to scale models of newly designed or refined components. As 3D presentations of plant layouts are becoming the norm, customers can exactly survey the accessibility, maintenance friendliness, or occupational safety of complex operation areas.

In this context the use of ’virtual reality’ (VR) is a completely new feature: In Oberweis, SBM presented the complex VR implementation of a planned some 24 ha large port handling and recycling terminal: The whole equipment and all stations and material flows are displayed on a scale of 1:1, and with VR glasses you can move around freely in the plant, identify potentials for optimisation, or clarify delicate safety precautions with the competent authorities already in an early stage. According to SBM, this VR model established by external programming based on genuine CAD data resulted in the order placing for the major project starting this year with an investment volume of about 12 million €, and it also led to a further order at another location of the same client for another 6 million €.

Innovation in all sectors

One year before the start of bauma, the world’s leading trade fair for construction machinery, the SBM management also provided insights into ongoing development projects and upcoming technology premieres. Brand new is the new modular container-mobile mineral processing project GRAVEX that combines the flexibility of (semi) mobile processing with the advantages of stationary plants regarding emission protection, reliability, and long-term security of investment. SBM uses its full potential in the conception of compact and at the same time powerful individual machines and conveying equipment as well as its long-standing experience in the construction of complex container-mobile concrete mixing plants to integrate the various processing stages (washing, crushing, screening, secondary crushing, classification, storage) into temporarily built container structures. Just like these, the ’gravel plant in the container’ has also been designed for long-term and season-independent operations in for example infrastructure construction projects or for the profitable (remains) exploitation of deposits. When the job is done, the GRAVEX system is disassembled without any loss in value and adapted to new requirements upon demand.

’Every year a new model’ – of course, SBM will remain true to its principle of regularly expanding the range of track-mobile crushers also in 2022, the year the next bauma will take place. The fully redesigned impact crusher REMAX 600 presented in a spectacular design is setting new standards in the power class up to 600 t/h – not only due to compact transport dimensions and a machine weight of some 60 tonnes. Under the body in ’stealth look’ € the result of a competition between three industrial designers – an ’intelligent crusher’ taking full advantage of the all-electric SBM drive system and the modern detection resp. communication technologies necessary to ensure quality-oriented and economically efficient process automation will be hidden.

High-grade sensors in the machine automatically monitor feed material and final products, record the load conditions of crusher and conveyors, and optimise all separation processes down to overbelt magnetic separators and wind sifter. The redefined control system SBM Crush Control responsible for the automation system set up as a ’self-learning system’ validates every operating status in real time and carries out necessary adaptations (crusher gap setting, rotor speed, etc.) in a data-based and result-oriented way. Apart from immediate improvements like energy consumption (-10 %) and the percentage of marketable grain sizes after one work step (+10 %) this new technology mainly offers workload reductions for users and operators: “As it becomes more and more difficult to find qualified staff we pack as much practical know-how into the plant as possible, which is also a clear advantage for experienced operators dealing with frequently changing operations,” explains SBM Sales Manager Helmut Haider. The pilot series of the first ’intelligent’ REMAX 600 will start already in summer 2022, and the world premiere is planned for October at bauma in Munich.

www.sbm-mp.at

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