TWO massive mud filters have been installed at Wilmar’s Victoria Mill in Ingham, in what was a massive logistical challenge.
The $6.5 million project is now in its final stages after the filters were lifted through a temporary opening in the mill’s roof late last week.
Each filter weighs about 25 tonnes and a 400 tonne crane was used to safely lift the filters in to place.
The filters were transported to Ingham on a special low trailer, which was brought up from the Gold Coast, to ensure the filters could fit under the bridge on the Bruce Highway at Yabulu.
Herbert Regional Asset Manager Tienie van Blerk explained the logistics of the task.
“Each filter weighs about 25 tonnes each, and the rigging gear used for the lift weighs an extra three tonnes,” Mr van Blerk said.
“The filters had to be lifted about 30 metres into the air, at a radius of 42 metres, through a temporary opening in the factory’s roof.”
“Both of the mud filters were designed by Jord International and manufactured by Wulguru Group in Townsville.
“The filters were transported up to Ingham on a special low-loader trailer, which was brought up from the Gold Coast for this job.
“It was the only trailer capable of handling the weight of the filter while also being low enough to the ground to enable the filter to fit under the bridge on the highway at Yabulu.”
Once commissioned, the two new mud filters will boost the site’s mud filtering capabilities by almost 50 per cent.
This will reduce sugar loss in mud when the factory is experiencing high mud loadings.
Mr van Blerk said a lot of wok had been done during the maintenance season to prepare for the filter installation.
This included removing a decommissioned juice clarifier to make room inside the factory, building new foundations and walkways, and upgrading the filter station’s electrical switch room.
“Our team is currently working to complete the final installation of pipework, filter walkway platforms and the electrical wiring,” Mr van Blerk said.