The Laidig Auger: The Science Behind The Machine

Laidig Systems is proud to be the leading provider of storage and reclaim systems in the World. Laidig’s custom-engineered material handling systems offer proven performance and reliability that is second to none. The reclaim systems designed and manufactured at Laidig are complex, involving many pieces and parts working together as one cohesive unit.  At the heart of the system, and the part that really makes the system function, is the auger. The auger is an engineering masterpiece, individually designed and crafted with the specific customer and project objective in mind.

Laidig has been designing and manufacturing augers for over 50 years and each one is unique to their application. Laidig specializes in screw-type bottom reclaimers, and with the exception of the Clean Sweep and Fluidized Screw systems, the reclaimers are designed to start and operate under full material load. It’s not just a piece of metal that turns inside a silo or storage container. It’s much more than that. In essence at Laidig, the auger is more than steel.

More than Steel means that a Laidig auger is designed by a team of experienced engineers who gather the necessary product information, understand the customers’ needs, and calculate the specific technical aspects to not only function, but to do so for the life of the system.

The screw conveyor rotates about its own axis augering material toward the center of the silo floor. At the same time, the auger slowly advances, sweeping around the entire silo floor. Material augered to the center of the silo floor, then flows down through a center chute below the floor and into a discharge auger or conveyor for transfer out of the silo and to the next step in the material handling process.

Every auger design is comprised of three phases of development: the volume phase, the torque phase, and the structural phase.

The volume phase involves understanding how a given material will react when influenced by the auger, especially a free-flowing or strong material that is typically inefficient. To move material to the center of the storage container, the auger is engineered with rotating circular blades, called “flighting.” An auger must include a flighting design that creates an appropriate volume that will meet the demands of  the customer’s process. The flighting is essential in conveying the materials to the center of the storage silo in a First-In-First-Out (FIFO) approach.

The auger torque phase is another key part in the auger design process. Most Laidig reclaimers are designed to operate under full material load at the bottom of a silo or similar storage vessel. The auger torque process uses material characteristics and auger geometry to ensure the reclaimer drive train is sized to begin rotating upon customer demand under a variety of conditions.

The last phase of the Laidig auger design is the structural phase. This focuses on the auger tube geometry and ensures that the auger is durable enough to operate successfully under the rigorous conditions at the bottom of a silo or storage structure.

These three key phases come together to define each Laidig Reclaim auger. The parameters of each of these design phases complement one another, and will often require multiple iterations in order to secure the ideal functioning combination of each particular auger.

For over 50 years Laidig Systems has been designing, engineering, manufacturing and servicing reclaim systems all over the World and is the leader in the storage and reclaim of bulk materials. Laidig’s reputation within the industry is second to none and Laidig’s commitment to excellence is fostered by their adaptability to their customers’ needs. Engineers with 30 years of experience lead a dedicated team to designing the best augers in the World. This, coupled with an in-house testing lab and a library of lessons learned, is another reason why Laidig and Laidig augers are more than steel.