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Mansfield Sand Meeting their Goals

First published in the July 2019 issue of Quarry Management

Four years after installation, McLanahan’s Hydrosizer sand plant and Ultra Fines Recovery system continues to deliver premium-quality sands

Mansfield Sand Company Ltd have been quarrying sand in north Nottinghamshire for more than 170 years. The company is renowned as a supplier of materials for top-class sports and sporting venues across the UK and Ireland. It supplies sand material to 16 Premier League clubs, 16 Championship clubs and 120 other football league and non-league clubs for use in their stadiums and training ground facilities. 

Besides sand for football stadiums, Mansfield Sand also produces a wide range of products for landscaping and equestrian uses, including championship golf and world-class show-jumping arenas, as well as asphalt sand, foundry sand, and sand for concrete and brick products. 

The challenge

In 2014, Mansfield Sand wanted to upgrade their plant and control system to process a new deposit. The company required a plant capable of processing 300 tonnes/h to manufacture its various products, including golf sand that meets US Golf Association standards, block pavior sand and asphalt sand. In addition to this requirement, the local planning department set a noise restriction to ensure the new plant would not disturb some rare birds nesting near the boundaries of the site. 

At this time, McLanahan applications engineer Neill Rowland contacted Mansfield Sand to offer them a solution in the form of a Hydrosizer sand plant. ‘One of the things that sold the plant was McLanahan’s technical ability to offer a sand plant that could produce five different products in one pass,’ said Mr Rowland, who noted that experience and confidence had also played a role in Mansfield Sand’s decision to work with McLanahan. 

‘Mansfield Sand were familiar with Hydrosizer systems from an existing plant they had been operating for several decades, so they already knew the benefits in terms of what they were trying to achieve here,’ he explained. ‘When you start getting down to really fine sizing, Hydrosizer classification is really more efficient and more cost-effective. The Hydrosizer is the only piece of equipment suitable for the application to achieve the tight tolerances.’

The solution

McLanahan installed a Hydrosizer plant incorporating McLanahan pumps, sumps, hydrocyclones, a separator, dewatering screens and a blending system with the ability to blend to 1% accuracy, to help Mansfield Sand meet the strict specifications required of their final products. The end products are discharged at less than 15% moisture, which ensures stockpiling efficiency and allows for further drying processes. 

To meet the requirements set by the planners, the entire plant is housed within a galvanized structure, clad and insulated to reduce the noise level. The plant’s components are also lined with rubber to protect them from the abrasiveness of the sand. 

After some calculations from Mansfield Sand’s laboratory technicians, the company discovered that the waste from the wash plant would fill their lagoon within 18 months, so they turned to McLanahan for help with their water management. McLanahan provided an Ultra Fines Recovery (UFR) system to recover fines down to 40 microns and extend the life of Mansfield Sand’s lagoon system. ‘Anything bigger than 40 microns is recovered, anything less goes to the lagoon,’ said Mr Rowland.

The results

Since commissioning the Hydrosizer plant, Mansfield Sand say they have not received a single customer complaint due to the performance of the equipment. The plant’s modern control system gives Mansfield Sand the ability to adjust the product to meet consumer demands. ‘The plant does have quite a bit of functionality for them to develop product and potentially react to market changes,’ explained Mr Rowland.

In four years of operation, the Hydrosizer plant has proven to be both stable and reliable. It produces a consistent 280 tonnes/h, and to date has produced 2 million tonnes of sand. Moreover, the UFR system has doubled the life of the lagoon by allowing Mansfield Sand to capture the fine material. ‘It’s a low-value product, but it’s a product they can sell, and it’s a product that isn’t filling their lagoon, which is the real benefit to them,’ said Mr Rowland.

Overall, Mansfield Sand are pleased with the Hydrosizer plant and UFR system. ‘A good team effort by both parties and a professional working relationship providing a technologically advanced plant gives us flexibility, controllability and future-proofing for the estimated 30-year life of the site,’ commented Richard Abraham, managing director of Mansfield Sand.

‘Now, four years on, we continue to have a fantastic working relationship and our process plant continues to manufacture our premium-quality sands to Mansfield Sand’s exacting standards. The partnership between Mansfield Sand and McLanahan has rested on the McLanahan team’s awareness of the importance we place on the reputation of our products and our respect for their experience. The partnership had a lot to prove, and it proved to be a great success.’

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