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A General Approach for Introducing Materials Handling Topics in a Mechanical Engineering Degree Course

[+] Author Affiliations
W. John Dartnall

University of Technology-Sydney

Paper No. IMECE2005-82004, pp. 1455-1463; 9 pages
  • ASME 2005 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Manufacturing Engineering and Materials Handling, Parts A and B
  • Orlando, Florida, USA, November 5 – 11, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Manufacturing Engineering Division and Materials Handling Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4223-1 | eISBN: 0-7918-3769-6
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


This paper outlines the development of the teaching materials for an introductory lecture/chapter in a single semester final-year materials handling course for undergraduate and postgraduate mechanical engineers. The study of materials handling equipment and processes primarily involves the application of mechanical engineering design principles emanating from the mechanics of machine elements, structures, thermo-fluids and particle mechanics. The detail topics of our course are from two main areas: • Bulk materials handling by screw, bucket and belt conveyors as well as pneumatic and hydraulic conveyors. • Unit (discrete) materials handling of artifacts and manufactured (packaged) products. For undergraduate and early postgraduate students, we utilize this course to provide an opportunity for students to amalgamate and integrate their engineering knowledge and experiences, and solve complex, real world problems of the materials handling industries. Although the students are mostly fresh from their engineering sciences and hence have skills at applying basic principles, many have little or no practical experience in the materials handling industries. For this reason we start by discussing the significance of the industry and expose them to that fact that these industries have historically expanded from simple (manual) handling to large scale mechanical handling of goods and bulk solids. The particle mechanics aspect of the bulk handling component of the course is relatively unfamiliar to the students. For this reason, after giving our brief history and socio-economic perspective of the materials handling industry, we emphasize general principles related to the handling of particulate solids. We differentiate between design approaches where designers work from basic mechanics and the common empirical design procedures often outlined by manufacturers.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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