silica and moulding sands association (samsa) part of the Mineral Products Association (MPA)


silica and moulding
sands association



How is it produced?

Sand Extraction

Industrial sand is typically extracted from open sand quarries of naturally occurring quartz-rich sand and sandstone.

Extraction methods depend primarily on the degree of cementation of the rock.

Sand is extracted from the quarry normally by front wheeled loading Shovel however if the sand is below the water table a floating dredge is used.

The dredge delivers slurry of sand and water to the processing plant via a pipeline, while the front loader simply scoops the loose sand up and transports onto conveyor belts for delivery to the processing plant.

The sand can then be sorted through a series of screens that separate differently sized particles. The sand is washed, and sent to a sand classification plant, where the particles are further separated. If required the sand can be further processed using attrition, magnetic separation and crushed if smaller particles are needed; to ensure that the sand meets the companies agreed specifications.

Once graded the sand can be sold as moist sand or dried.

The drying process is usually completed using fluidised air dryers which heat the sand to approximately 100c to drive off any retained moisture; the dried sand is then passed through a heat exchanger to cool and then transported onto conveyor belts for delivery to storage silos.

The dried sand can then be delivered to customers using powder tanks or sent to an automated bagging plant to pack the sand into bags.

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