Overview of dredging concept, including automated dredging, with liquid waste technology dredges


Courtesy of Liquid Waste Technology LLC - Mud Cat

The RUNT Model RCLPEF, an electrically powered remote controlled dredge, is designed to remove sediments from the bottom of waterways, ponds, and settling lagoons. In situ solids are excavated and transported as a slurry through a piping system to a remote location.

Foam filled, steel pontoons provide the necessary flotation to support the machinery and equipment in the waterway. Principal features include the auger head, submersible pump, boom, boom hoist, traverse winch and hydraulic system. The auger head and the submersible pump are essential to effective solids removal. The boom hoist vertically positions the auger and submersible pump in the sediment while the traversing winch propels the machine forward and backward along a wire rope cable anchored at both ends. This proven design provides one of the most cost-effective means on the market today for hydraulically dredging sediments.

Prior to operation of the dredge, an anchored cable harness is established for positioning and propelling the unit in the waterway. Generally, the harness is comprised of two lateral cables located on opposite sides of the pond with a traverse cable stretched between them. The traverse cable is threaded through the treble sheave winch and cable guides on the unit, which after pre-tensioning the cable to remove the slack, propels the unit forward and backward. After the floating discharge hose and/or pipe are connected to the dredge, it is ready to operate. Generally, solids are excavated while traversing forward only.

All dredge functions can be remotely controlled from shore using a hand-held transmitter, or run via complete automation developed by LWT. A series of switches on the transmitter enable the operator to start and stop all equipment as well as set the speeds of the slurry pump and winch traverse.

At the starting point, near one end (or side) of the pond, the operator turns on the electrical power to the lagoon pumper, lowers the boom, turns the slurry pump on, setting the desired pump speed for flow rate, auger on, sets the travel control forward and adjusts the speed to the desired rate of travel. The dredge travels forward until it reaches the other side of the pond or the operator stops it. Upon reaching the forward limit of travel, the system stops forward travel, stops the auger, raises the auger head a pre-settable time, changes the pump control over to a pre-settable time, then shuts down the slurry pump, goes into reverse at the same speed it was moving forward and 'dead-heads' back to the starting point then shuts down. The control settings including the depth of cut must be set before starting a new dredging cycle.

When all of the bottom sediments have been excavated in a given area, the PIT HOG RUNT lagoon pumper is laterally repositioned and operations are resumed. This procedure is repeated as many times as necessary until the entire water body has been cleaned.

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