15 September 2011

The C-turner – Turning bulk logistics upside down

Kiruna Wagon has developed a groundbreaking new system for railroad transportation and the unloading of bulk material. This flexible product is called the “C-turner” and combines optimal productivity with extreme simplicity. The unloading capacity is comparable or higher than for rotary car dumpers. Due to patent and developing processes, Kiruna Wagon is able to share technical information about the C-turner only after a non-disclosure agreement is signed.

The C-turner compared to gondola wagons

Compared with a system of gondola wagons and rotary car dumpers, the C-turner offers several advantages:

1. No Rotary Couplings
The complexity, tare weight and price of cars is similar to that of regular gondola wagons, with the important difference that the C-turner cars don’t require the relatively sensitive rotary couplers.

2. Reduced Unloading Station Complexity
The complexity of the unloading station is only a fraction of that of a rotary car dumper, yet the C-turner offers the same level of unloading productivity. As a result, the cost up front, to run and maintain the unloading station, is only a fraction of what is required by a rotary car dumper.

3. Shallower Ground Penetration of Unloading Station Structure
The ground penetration of the unloading station structure is much shallower. This further lowers the cost and makes the C-turner an advantageous choice for locations in or close to ports.

4. Easier Car Positioning During Unloading
The unloading station quickly adjusts lengthwise to the position of the car being unloaded. This makes it possible to position the cars with a regular train engine and thus the need for expensive car positioners is eliminated.

Kiruna Wagon has filed for a worldwide patent for the C-turner system.

The C-turner compared to side tipper systems

The C-turner wagon can easily be designed to withstand the loading of rocks and boulders thanks to a more suitable design of the loading cube, in combination with the use of ultra wear resistant steel in the loading cube. Among other advantages offered by the C-turner system, compared with a traditional side tipper system, is the lower tare weight, approx. 30 %, which generates a correspondingly larger load capacity.

The simplified wagon design of the C-turner system results in:

1. Cheaper cost up front

2. Lower maintenance cost of the wagons

3. Improved reliability of the wagons

The C-turner system has a loading and unloading productivity comparable to that of the side tipping solution. The unloading mechanism of the C-turner system is, however, somewhat more expensive; about USD 2-3 million, compared to less than 1 million USD for the side tipper system. However, since you only need one unloading station, this extra cost is compensated for by the lower cost per wagon.

The side tipper is still advantageous when the wagons are few in number, or when there is more than one unloading station in the different locations. In addition, the side tipper has a secure roof which protects the load from wind and rain and prevents hazardous materials from contaminating the environment during transport.

The right solution for you

Kiruna Wagon has an impressive track record of providing custom made and innovative logistics solutions designed to meet the high demands of the modern mining industry.

Please contact Bengt Bolsöy at E-mail: bengt.bolsoy@kirunawagon.com, phone: +46(0)70-601 58 15 for more information on our most recent innovation – the patent pending C-turner.