KWS Manufacturing

Small Diameter Stainless Screw Feeders to Meter Metal Catalyst

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Plant Name and Location

BASF Catalysts LLC
Elyria, OH

General Description

BASF is the largest chemical producer in the world. At the Elyria, OH plant cathode materials are manufactured and used by BASF’s Customers to produce advanced lithium-ion batteries that will propel current and next-generation hybrid and full electric vehicles. Metal catalyst is produced as part of the process. Control & Metering (Spiroflow) designed and provided a system for metering and loading metal catalyst powder into drums. KWS worked very closely with both BASF and Control & Metering to supply screw feeders to meet the demands of the application.

Design Parameters

  1. Product Type: Metal Catalyst Powder
  2. Material Density: 100 Lbs. per Cubic Foot
  3. Capacity: 39 Cubic feet per Hour
  4. Duty: 24 Hours per Day, 7 Days per Week

KWS Advantages

The process required small diameter screw feeders to consistently meter the corrosive powder. KWS designed 3-inch diameter screw feeders in tubular housings with very tight tolerances between the screw OD and tubular housing ID to ensure accurate metering. This project required a cooperative effort between BASF, an engineering consultant, other companies providing mating equipment, Control & Metering and KWS. KWS engineers provided the tools and knowledge to transfer engineering data to the various stakeholders and helped integrate a system for BASF that would meet all of their needs.

Special Features

Based on the requirements of the application, KWS designed and manufactured high-quality screw feeders constructed from 316-stainless steel. The close clearance between the screw and housing was accomplished by machining the OD of the screw to fit the housing ID. The screw was designed for easy removal and held in place by one screw. ANSI pipe flanges were used for the inlet and discharge to mate to upstream and downstream equipment. KWS selected an air purged shaft seals to contain the abrasive and corrosive powder and protect the end bearing. Trough ends were drilled and studded to precise tolerances so bearings, seals, and drives could bolt up easily. KWS elected to use vector-duty motors so BASF could have infinite control of the screw feeder speed and thus the output into their drums.


"Thank you for the machine, we will be ordering another screw feeder when production capacity increases!"

Dave Hesketh, Engineering Manager – Control & Metering (Spiroflow)


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