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Compliance support for coating chemical storage units

Compliance support for coating chemical storage units

The safe storage and handling of chemicals is critical in the mining industry. For the team at XBulk, a Victorian heavy equipment engineering business, building vessels to store ammonium nitrate requires strict quality assurance procedures and documentation. Their solutions are trusted by some of Australia's leading Australian mining companies.

Dulux Protective Coatings provided a three-product system to coat the 90-tonne vessels and accompanying transfer augers inside and out. While our products will provide excellent corrosion protection under intense chemical and UV exposure, this was not just a specification project. Our Victorian team partnered with XBulk's management and application team to establish best practice procedures that will support ongoing compliance.

A partnership to achieve best practice quality assurance

Victorian State Sales Manager Steve Kraljevic and Trade Specialist Robert Esposito travelled to XBulk's manufacturing site on multiple occasions, delivering application training and a procedural manual that can be submitted for compliance inspections.

"We left no stone unturned in terms of setting up the right processes for using our system going forward,” Robert says.

As well as best practice spraying techniques and proactive troubleshooting solutions, advising the coating applicators when and how to measure the film build of each coating (wet and dry) was a key step.

"To comply with mining specifications, each coating needs to achieve a certain dry film micron measurement. Coating compliance inspectors need to see that the specification has been complied with,” Robert explains. "Xbulk now has a step-by-step application manual that they can complete and supply to their mining customers."

Duremax® GFX leads corrosion protection

Ammonium nitrate is used to create commercial explosives for the mining industry. Stored in crystal form, it is a highly corrosive substance.

"We needed to protect the mild steel with a coating system that would hold up against the chemical exposure and the rigours of mining environments, including high UV ratings and abrasive dust and dirt," says Robert.

XBulk's applicators will achieve the specification via the following steps, using the stripe coating technique during spray application:

  • Surface preparation: Abrasive blast clean to the Australian Standard AS1627.4 Class 2.5
  • Primer: Duremax GPE ZP at 150 microns DFT (dry film thickness)
  • Second coat: Duremax GFX at 200 microns DFT
  • Topcoat: Weathermax HBR at 80 microns DFT

With its high glass flake content providing chemical and abrasion resistance, Duremax GFX was the star coating in this system.

Priming coat Duremax GPE ZP was chosen for its zinc phosphate pigment, to further inhibit corrosion on mild steel. Topcoat Weathermax HBR completes a high volume of our specifications, as it is designed especially to protect assets against Australia's high UV exposure.

"Although UV protection was not required for the inside coating, the topcoat was found to help the crystals transfer in and out of vessels efficiently, so the same system is used inside and out."

First class service and expertise

After working in partnership with the XBulk team, Dulux Protective Coatings was thrilled to receive the following recognition from Managing Director Craig Miller.

“We acknowledge the outstanding contribution and support that the Dulux Protective Coatings team has made in Xbulk's continual work to produce world class ammonium nitrate storage and handling equipment for the mining industry. We are businesses with a common thread, delivering first class service and expertise.”

We look forward to our continuing partnership with this great Australian business.

If you require detailed specification and application support to meet industry compliance, get in touch with our expert team, who will match our leading products with genuine support.


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