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Storage Innovation

Published by , Editorial Assistant
World Cement,

A Drive-Thru DomeSilo, based on a model new to the bulk industry and a recent Dome Technology innovation, is up and running at a Continental Cement terminal in Memphis, Tennessee, in the US.

The Drive-Thru stands at 100 ft tall and has a 50 ft dia., with a 4500 metric t storage capacity. It is part of an existing terminal purchased by Continental Cement that required significant upgrades and additions, all of which Dome Technology oversaw as general contractor.

Meeting a need in the marketplace

Dome Technology developed the Drive-Thru DomeSilo for companies to fill truck or rail directly from the storage structure and to speed up the process of product reception to delivery.

The Drive-Thru DomeSilo includes a fill pipe, a storage vessel, stair or ladder access, a scale, and an appropriate foundation. Companies can save by building a single drive-through storage facility, as it eliminates the need for multiple mechanical systems, operators, and structures.

Dome Technology published news of its Drive-Thru DomeSilo concept in June 2017 and contracted with Continental Cement Co. shortly thereafter, thanks in part to cost savings.

An existing site gets an overhaul

In 2017, Continental Cement purchased an existing distribution terminal on the Mississippi River. The site’s bolted steel silo was constructed in 2007 and the entire facility needed upgrades. There was no barge unloader onsite and the pneumatic transport system also needed work. The existing steel silo required some repairs, and Continental Cement had every intention of utilising this 2678 metric t silo for storage.

The company also wanted to increase the onsite storage capacity by 4500 metric t. To achieve this, Continental Cement needed to choose between two additional bolted steel silos, one DomeSilo, or concrete silos. Company management decided on the Drive-Thru DomeSilo; with its unique construction techniques, this storage vessel could be constructed quickly and was price competitive with bolted steel tanks and drive-through concrete silos.

Once contracted, Dome Technology got to work. The project wrapped up in August 2018 and the terminal began its next chapter as an essential player in Continental Cement’s business. Today, a fluidised aeration system boosts the truck loading rate. A bridge between the dome and silo provides access between the two. A new barge unloader transports the cement from the river and into the Drive-Thru DomeSilo or the existing steel silo.

Direct loadout takes place as product flows through a spout for loading into the truck or rail. The dome provides 100% reclaim, utilising a fully aerated floor.

Dome Technology provided the structural, mechanical, and electrical systems. Cement industry vendors FLSmidth and DCL were integral partners, providing the fluidised floor components and loadout equipment, respectively.

The Drive-Thru DomeSilo’s versatility

Dome Technology’s storage domes are always custom, varying in size and shape based on customer need. Most Drive-Thru DomeSilos will likely range from between 1500 t and 15 000 t, but by utilising a fluidised floor system, a company could achieve any size storage with this technology.

With a portfolio full of massive storage projects – some more than 200 000 t – the Dome Technology team wanted to expand its expertise to smaller storage. The team developed the Drive-Thru as an adaptation on its DomeSilo model: a tall, narrow dome that stores more product on a smaller footprint than a silo of similar dimensions. Increased storage is possible based on the dome’s curvature, allowing for the entire interior to store product, since a dome can support pressure at all points of the structure.

Although the first Drive-Thru was built to store cement, the model is ready for use with other products and applications as well.

“The Drive-Thru innovation provides a solution to the cement industry that has remained unresolved – unlimited diversity in shape and storage capacity,” said Bradley Bateman, CEO of Dome Technology. “Customers are no longer required to choose a storage system depending on what the vendors can supply, based on a silo or tank diameter or total storage capacity. The Drive-Thru DomeSilo’s shape, diameter, and height can be unique based on the actual site and customer requirements, and there is no practical limit on the amount of storage for the DomeSilo. In addition, the exterior of the DomeSilo is protected from the elements with a waterproof membrane, eliminating the concern of a leaking tank or silo and significantly prolonging the life of the structure itself.”

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US cement news Cement news 2018