Live capacity is the reduced amount of material flowing through a silo, hopper, bunker or chute.
In areas like the chute, reduced live capacity affects product flow which will alter the impact zone, leading to increased wear in areas not designed to wear and increasing the chance of misalignment. Misalignment leads to spillage, belt wear, structural damage, and reduced belt life.
This reduced amount of material flow from the silo, hopper, bunker or chute, creates a number of issues. It reduces plant efficiency because as the live capacity is reduced, less material actively flows through the silo, hopper, bunker or chute, and into the plant. This means material is more likely to run out and result in reduced efficiency.
In order maximise live capacity, flow aid devices are used to promote the movement of the bulk materials through the hoppers, stockpiles, silos and chutes.
Air cannons or air blasters use compressed air to create an explosive force that is used to dislodge and prevent build-ups, blockages and clinging material from the walls of hoppers, stockpiles, silos or chutes.
Vibrators utilise vibrations to shift clinging materials and thus maximise live capacity.