Pumping slurry is a demanding task for any pump due to the abrasive nature of the materials involved. The wear and tear on pump components can result in high maintenance and repair costs, leading to costly production downtime. Additionally, the accumulation of excess sediment can cause operational difficulties. In such challenging conditions, the Grindex Bravo pump range shines as an ideal solution.

This is according to Justin Bawden, Key Account Manager at Integrated Pump Technology, who says that Grindex Bravo pumps are specifically designed to excel in applications where pumping fluids with high concentrations of abrasives, such as sand and stones, is required. 

“These pumps are renowned for their robustness and reliability. One of the standout features of the Grindex Bravo pump is its agitator, which efficiently mixes and suspends solids, allowing the pump to transport them effectively,” he says. 

To tackle the wear problem head-on, the Bravo range features hydraulic components made from hard iron, one of the toughest materials available. This ensures durability and reliability, even in the face of extreme wear and tear.

Bawden says the Grindex Bravo pumps come packed with features that enhance their performance and ease of maintenance. The pumps are designed for dry pit applications, thanks to a cooling jacket, reducing the risk of overheating. A ready-to-install cartridge seal minimises downtime during repairs and assembly. The inclusion of a leakage sensor helps prevent further damage, saving on maintenance costs. The large inlet can handle solids of varying sizes, while the hard iron impeller and pump housing maximise durability and performance. A single adjustment sleeve unit allows for easy impeller adjustment, and the agitator efficiently stirs up sand, sludge and solids in suspension.

The Bravo range is not only rugged but also versatile and is capable of handling liquids with pH values ranging from 5.5 up to 14. The 22 kW pump can be fitted with a SMART unit with a built-in plug and pump, eliminating the need for external starter boxes. The pump is further protected by phase-failure guards, temperature guards and phase-sequence control, ensuring safe and efficient operation.

Bawden says that every pumping application is unique, and the experienced team at Integrated Pump Technology can help select the appropriate pump unit based on specific parameters. “This ensures that the most suitable and efficient unit is deployed for the task at hand. The exceptional durability of Grindex Bravo pumps allows them to thrive in tough and challenging environments, providing reliability when it matters most.”

In addition to their durability, these pumps are designed for energy efficiency, leading to long term savings in energy consumption and making them a cost effective solution when considering the total cost of ownership. 

Moreover, Integrated Pump Technology ensures that replacement parts are readily available, either directly from the company’s head office or through its strategically located network of distributors. “This swift access to parts minimises downtime and reduces repair turnaround times, ensuring that pumps are back in action as soon as possible,” Bawden says. 

Grindex slurry pumps offer an effective solution and outstanding value, making them an excellent choice for industries such as quarries, mines, dredging and cleaning of settling ponds that require pumps with high durability. Each component of the Bravo pump is engineered for maximum endurance and reliability.

With trained distributors strategically placed across the country and southern Africa, Integrated Pump Technology provides expert support for installation and maintenance, significantly reducing downtime. 


Long regarded as a leading brand in abrasive slurry applications, KREBS® Technequip® knife gate valves now allow less stockholding of spares through the enhanced interchangeability of components. 

Most of the components are standard across the range, explains Herman Britz, Regional Product Line Manager for Pumps, Cyclones and Valves at FLSmidth. The upgrade of the legacy products has ensured that customers need to keep a smaller variety of parts in their inventory.

“While the bodies of the flange-type valve and the wafer-type valve will differ, for instance, other components like the gate, actuator and wiper blades are standard,” says Britz. “This means that the components for a 200 mm flange valve, for instance, will also fit on the 200 mm wafer-type valve.”

This benefits the supply chain and helps customers to reduce their stockholding. With an extensive footprint in mineral processing, the KREBS® Technequip® valves are used across a range of commodities and materials – from phosphates to the platinum group metals.  

“The focus of our design was for harsh, abrasive applications – where these valves have proved their worth globally,” he says. In sizes from 50 mm up to 1,3 m in diameter, the valves match the pipe sizes in the market and are designed to deal with a wide range of pressures and process conditions. He highlights the ‘full port’ nature of the valve, reflecting that the valve’s inside diameter will be the same as the pipe when the valve is fully open. 

“This reduces any pressure loss as the material passes through the valve, and ensures that there is no turbulence, which also reduces the wear rate,” he explains. “The gate removes itself completely from the flow of material, which is a key differentiating factor.”

He also points to the valves’ push-through or self-cleaning design. This is essentially a self-flushing function which eliminates the need for a packing gland. As the gate closes during actuation, material is ejected out of the bottom of the valve, ensuring that there is full closure of the gate and a reliable seal is created. Another vital contributor to the valves’ durability and performance is the internal wear sleeve.

“The wear sleeves on our knife gate valves are the only surface that is in direct contact with the slurry,” says Britz. “By protecting the other parts from wear and tear, the sleeves reduce the need for replacement of parts.”

A bubble-tight seal ensures that there is no spillage, whether the valve is open or closed. Importantly, the sleeves can also be replaced in the field, so there is no need to take the valve to a specialised workshop. 

“On our flange-type valve, a technician can simply remove the retainer flange and take out the sleeve, replacing it with a new part and returning the retainer to its position,” he says. “This is certainly a stand-out feature when compared to most products on the market, and helps our customers avoid undue downtime.”


Concor’ s name has long been associated with Construction World’s Best Projects with numerous of the company’s projects, both in infrastructure and the built environment, winning accolades over the past 22 years since the inception of this prestigious awards platform. This year has been no different with two of the three projects entered by the company securing podium finishes.

The large and challenging Trevenna Super Basement Project in Sunnyside, Pretoria – which has created a ‘future-proofed’ five level basement as a precursor for A-grade office buildings in the Trevenna Office Campus, received two Highly Commended Awards – one in the Building Contractors category and the other in the AfriSam Innovation Award for Sustainable Construction category. 

Covering almost 70,000 square metres of parking space and other amenities, the super basement extends 20 metres below ground level. This meant that the basement floor was 12 metres below the water table, creating significant groundwater and rainwater challenges. Hard rock conditions were also encountered and required controlled blasting and other excavation to reach the required levels. 

The Trevenna Super Basement is in a busy urban area, surrounded by high density residential accommodation. Community engagement was therefore key to the project’s success, as was careful planning, effective communication and a flexible approach from the contractors. 

Likewise the Eastgate Sustainability Project was also awarded two Highly Commended awards, one in the Building Contractors category and the other in the AfriSam Innovation Award for Sustainable Construction category. This project involves the extension of the solar energy generation plant, the installation of rainwater harvesting, storage and treatment facilities and the upgrading of the heating, cooling and ventilation (HVAC) system. 

Underpinning each of these fast track sub-projects is the demanding condition that trading activities at this busy shopping centre must be allowed to safely continue undisrupted. At a technical level, there are myriad challenges which the Concor team is successfully overcoming through careful planning, efficient execution and skilled workmanship. Demanding particular attention is the fact that most activity is being conducted on the centre’s roof parking level, where the load bearing capacity of the roof slab is a constraint.

Winning awards and securing podium finishes in prestigious competitions like Construction World’s Best Projects is a testament to Concor’s commitment to excellence and its ability to deliver outstanding results in both infrastructure and the built environment.


With the continued energy poverty being experienced in South Africa, motors and drives are set to play an ever more crucial role in industry’s energy solution strategy. The manufacturing and processing sectors, which include minerals processing plants, are energy-intensive industries, and finding ways to reduce energy consumption while increasing efficiencies is essential for both economic and environmental reasons. 

This is according to Jaco Brits, Projects and Technical Manager at WEG Africa, who says that the company has the knowledge and expertise as well as the technology solutions to assist operations in reducing their operating costs and increasing their productivity while guarding their energy security.

“Electric motors and drives are used across industries to operate pumps, mixers, conveyors, vibrating screens and feeders, crushers, and other machinery including automated packaging systems,” Brits says. 

“Advancements in motor and drive technology, underpinned by WEG’s extensive research and development, have seen substantial improvements in energy efficiency, both equipped with advanced control algorithms to optimise motor performance based on real-time conditions,” he explains. “These algorithms assist in ensuring motors operate at peak efficiency levels, even in complex processes.” 

“By upgrading to newer technology and installing higher efficiency motors such as the WEG IE3 or IE4 electric motor, customers can significantly lower their energy consumption. In addition to this,” he adds, “by combining high efficiency motors with WEG variable-speed drives (VSDs), better control and optimisation of equipment can be achieved. This ensures that equipment operates at its most energy efficient speed and power level, and will reduce operating costs significantly.”

Commenting on the use of VSDs, Brits explains that traditional fixed speed motors run at a constant speed regardless of the actual load requirements. In contrast, VSDs are most effective in controlling the speed and torque of motors based on the actual load requirements. This level of precision facilitates the adjustment of the motor’s speed to match the load, thereby ensuring that equipment operates only as needed. VSDs also have faster reaction to load changes and better integration with equipment. “All these factors reduce unnecessary energy consumption during periods of low demand and enhances overall equipment efficiency and performance,” says Brits. 

Unpacking advancements in drive technology, Brits points to the WEG CFW11 VSD line, which incorporates some of the most advanced technology in the world for alternating-current three-phase induction motors. 

“Incorporating WEG Vectrue™ technology, these new generation WEG drives combine variable frequency, sensorless and closed-loop vector (with encoder) control techniques in a single product. This facilitates high torque and a fast dynamic response with the self-tuning function allowing automatic configuration of the drive to adjust it to the motor and load in vector modes,” Brits says. 

With most industries looking at sustainable energy resources including renewables such as wind and solar, motors and drives will continue to play an important role in facilitating the integration of such systems. VSDs can be used to balance power supply and demand, and ensure stable operation in hybrid energy setups. 

“Substantial efficiency improvements are possible by leveraging the latest motor and drive technology, and the significant savings in energy consumption more than justify the capital cost of replacing old technology equipment with higher efficiency technology,” Brits concludes. 


A leading limestone producer based in Kati, Mali, has taken delivery of a FastPlant™ from Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions. Central to the buying decision was the short lead time of the Sandvik FastPlant™, which allowed the operation to expand production sooner, especially given the fast-tracked nature of this project. 

Hubert Kwesi Essel, Sales Engineer at Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions based in West Africa, explains that the customer has been running an existing Sandvik fixed plant for years, but increased demand required a different solution. Given the urgency with which the company wanted to expand its capacity, the Sandvik FastPlant™ concept was the ultimate solution to add capacity within a short period of time. 

“The customer opted for a 200 tonnes per hour (tph) two-stage FastPlant, which is a range of pre-defined crushing and screening modules made for the most common quarrying and mining applications. Delivery of a Sandvik FastPlant generally takes about 10 to 12 weeks, as opposed to double or thrice the timeline for a custom-built plant,” explains Essel. “This particular plant, however, took about 20 weeks due to shipping and logistical delays from Europe to Mali.”

The plant comprises a full suite of Sandvik equipment including a grizzly feeder, a jaw crusher, a horizontal shaft impactor (HIS) and a four-deck screen. With a 100 mm closed side setting (CSS), the Sandvik ST1263H vibrating grizzly feeder, which takes a top size of up to 700 mm, ensures efficient scalping and fines removal, significantly improving the throughput of the primary jaw crusher, the Sandvik CJ411. 

“With a close side setting (CSS) of 100 mm, the Sandvik CJ411 was chosen for its high capacity. The crusher’s deep symmetrical crushing chamber and optimised nip angle maximises size reduction and production capacity,” says Essel.  

From the jaw, material goes into a surge bin, which in turn feeds the Sandvik CI722 horizontal shaft impactor (HIS) secondary crusher with a 25 mm CSS, the first ever Sandvik HSI in West Africa. The CI722 is the perfect secondary crusher for non-abrasive material such as limestone. The working principle of the Sandvik CI722 HSI encourages material to break along its natural cleavage planes, and it produces stress-free cubical-shaped products. 

From the HSI, material is directed into a four-deck Sandvik SA2164 screen, with a 25 mm top deck and a 19 mm bottom deck. The other two decks are 13 mm and 5 mm respectively. The screen produces four different product sizes from 0 to 5 mm up to 19 to 25 mm. 

Apart from the fast delivery time, the flexible nature of the Sandvik FastPlant™ was a major appeal for the customer, says Praveen Kumar VG, Sales Support – Global Plant Solutions at Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions.

“If production requirements change in future, it is simple for the customer to just add a couple of modules to increase production or take out a few modules to reduce capacity in line with market requirements,” says Kumar VG. “In addition, the FastPlant’s minimal footprint bodes well for the space-constrained site, while the minimal civil works translated into a major cost benefit for the client.”

Safety, adds Essel, was also a major factor in the client’s decision. “The client was strict about access and the FastPlant™ addressed the concerns through spacious walkways, as well as ample space in the chute aeras for ease of maintenance,” concludes Essel.


Dedicated SANParks Honorary Rangers across the country are committed to preserving and protecting the South African National Parks. These passionate volunteers tirelessly devote their time, skills and resources and their noble efforts play a vital role in ensuring the continued existence of our precious wildlife and ecosystems. 

SEW-EURODRIVE, a leading global drive technology specialist, recognises the significance of conservation and the critical role played by organisations like the SANParks Honorary Rangers, and proudly stands alongside them in this crucial mission. 

“At SEW-EURODRIVE, we understand the importance of conserving our natural heritage for the benefit of future generations, and this is why our Mbombela branch adopted the SANParks Honorary Rangers in that region as one of its Corporate Social Investment projects,” Raymond Obermeyer, Managing Director of SEW-EURODRIVE, explains. 

One of the primary ways in which SEW-EURODRIVE extends its support is by providing much-needed resources, such as two-way radios. These communication tools are invaluable for the SANParks Honorary Rangers as they carry out their diverse and challenging tasks, which range from wildlife monitoring and anti-poaching efforts to educational outreach programmes. The company’s contribution ensures that the Honorary Rangers are equipped with the essential tools to carry out their crucial work effectively, and this included travel medic kits, Garmin eTrex units, cane pangas, pruning shears, folding saws, steel cable cutters, chain saws and tool sets. 

Obermeyer says that SEW-EURODRIVE’s commitment to conservation extends beyond a mere donation of resources, and the company will be attending a Golf Day in Mbombela on 26 October 2023 in support of the SANParks Honorary Rangers. 

SEW-EURODRIVE has been operating its Mbombela branch for more than 25 years, and during this time, it has become an integral part of the community. The company serves various industry sectors in the region including agriculture, forestry, mining and general industry, contributing to the economic development and sustainability of the area.

SEW-EURODRIVE’s collaboration with the SANParks Honorary Rangers in the Mbombela region serves as a testament to the company’s commitment to environmental stewardship and community engagement. Through this partnership, the company is not only contributing to the conservation of South Africa’s natural treasures but also inspiring others to join the cause and ensure a brighter, more sustainable future for all.

“We are proud to support the SANParks Honorary Rangers in their mission to protect and preserve South Africa’s biodiversity, and believe that together, we can make a meaningful difference,” Obermeyer says. 


In an innovative step that promotes both sustainability and local economic development, Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions is recycling the carbide buttons on its drill bits while boosting entrepreneurship and creating jobs in South Africa. 

The local initiative is part of a global strategy by the company to continuously improve the circularity of its manufacturing processes, according to Johan Blomerus, Business Line Manager, Rock Tools Southern Africa for Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions.

“Our solution combines years of technological development on specialised equipment for automated recycling, and a supplier development intervention to support two small black, youth-owned businesses,” says Blomerus. The businesses, located in the Gauteng and Free State provinces, are expanding to create up to 20 new employment opportunities in coming years. 

He explains that the recycling of used drill bits contributes to the Sandvik group’s ambitious sustainability goals to halve its carbon dioxide emissions by 2030. By embedding circularity across an essential component of mining, the group is supporting its customers’ drive to mine more sustainably.

“Making tools from recycled carbide requires 70 percent less energy and emits 64 percent less carbon dioxide,” he says. “It also reduces nitrous oxide emissions.”

The two South African SMMEs (Small Medium Mico Enterprises) appointed to undertake the carbide extraction from drill bits have been equipped with the necessary machinery to make the process safe and cost effective. Since 2016, Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions has invested nearly R5 million in developing carbide extraction equipment, notes Blomerus. 

“The equipment has been installed and commissioned at their facilities, so they can extract the carbide buttons from the drill bits we deliver to them from our customers,” he says. “We then pay them for the carbide extracted, and they have the added benefit of earning income from the steel bits – which they can sell as scrap.”

As well as the capital equipment and financial support, the SMMEs have received extensive training to ensure safe operation of the dedicated machinery – which was initially developed in South Africa and further improved in Sweden. This automated equipment replaces what was a slow and laborious manual process, providing an efficient business model for the SMMEs. Extracting the carbide in-country means much less weight that has to be exported to Germany, where the highly specialised task of carbide recycling can be conducted.

“Our recycling initiative has been extracting over six tonnes of carbide material annually over the last three to four years,” he says. “And we are planning to ramp up this initiative to operate 24 hours a day, which will allow the recycling of about 22 tonnes a year by the end of 2024.”

Blomerus concludes that Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions will also be rolling out the project to neighbouring countries, including Botswana and Zimbabwe. 


In the two decades since its launch, Grindex’s Magnum pump has emerged as the first choice for heavy-duty drainage tasks across a myriad of applications in the construction, mining and quarrying sectors. 

Available from Integrated Pump Technology, the Southern African distributor for this quality international pump brand, there are three distinct configurations – the Magnum L for low head, Magnum N for normal head and Magnum H for high head applications. 

Justin Bawden, Key Account Manager at Integrated Pump Technology, says that despite its robust industrial strength, a notable feature of the Magnum pump is its surprising portability. “The ergonomic design of the pump facilitates easy and straightforward handling which aids ease of installation and movement from site to site.” 

Further, its streamlined construction, characterised by fewer components, simplifies maintenance inspections and servicing, making these not only quicker but also more cost effective. 

Grindex has incorporated a cutting-edge hydraulic design into the pump, ensuring it not only provides high wear resistance but also minimises performance decline after prolonged use. Significantly, according to Bawden, this pump boasts up to three times the wear resistance of its competitors, thanks to this optimised hydraulic design. 

Adding to its resilience, the Magnum pump features an air valve specifically designed to prevent overheating by cooling the equipment during dry runs. This innovative measure ensures prolonged pump life and uninterrupted performance, even under challenging conditions. 

The Magnum pump’s dependable design combined with its ease of maintenance has earned it a favoured position among hundreds of customers worldwide and is available in both 50hz and 60hz variants. 

When it comes to environments and applications that demand resilience and efficiency, such as construction sites, tunnels, mines and quarries, Grindex’s Magnum pump stands out as an unparalleled asset. “In essence, for industries that prioritise reliability and a proven track record, the Grindex Magnum pump remains unmatched,” Bawden concludes. 


The addition of another 5,74 MW of solar power at Eastgate Shopping Centre, east of Johannesburg, is being undertaken by leading black-owned contractor Concor, while keeping the movement of tenants and shoppers unaffected. 

The solar panels to generate this power will cover 30,000 square metres of the centre’s roof top, according to Concor Contract Manager Martin Muller. This has meant careful planning of the sequencing of the project and management of traffic to minimise any disruption, says Muller. 

“We are conducting the project in stages so we limit work to one confined area at a time, leaving as much parking available to shoppers as possible,” he says. “We also meticulously manage the traffic flow to ensure convenience and safety.”

The location of the solar panels on the roof top has presented various challenges to the construction process. The low load bearing capacity of the roof top parking area, for instance, makes it off limits to cranes and readymix trucks. This requires Concor to use small dumpers for transporting concrete, and the company designed special scaffolding to accommodate conveyors carrying concrete into the column formwork.

The weight of the structural steelwork underpinning the large domes of solar panels is significant. This has meant that the concrete columns securing the steelwork have to be drilled and dowelled onto the existing columns supporting the roof top slabs, thereby transferring the weight to the centre’s foundations. This requires careful scanning and opening up of the column heads, to avoid any damage to the post-tensioned cables. 

Muller explains that the risk of the solar panel structure being lifted by high winds is also a factor that has to be considered during construction. This requires that the dowels have a pull-out strength of 12 tonnes – or 120 kN – each, and these are tested to ensure compliance with the specification.

“To speed up the project, we had the steel girders and trusses pre-manufactured and ready for installation,” he says. “The specific configuration of each dome was determined by the position of the concrete stub columns, so this demanded very accurate design parameters for the manufacture and installation of the steelwork.”


Having set up its South African offices and admixture manufacturing facility in Jet Park near Johannesburg in 2005, CHRYSO Southern Africa has developed extensive local capability to serve markets in the region.

CHRYSO Southern Africa has manufacturing plants in Jet Park, Cape Town and Durban, as well as warehouses in Gqeberha and Bloemfontein. While the facilities in Cape Town and Durban produce about 70% of their requirements, there are certain specialised products that are supplied to them out of the Jet Park operation.

Among the company’s forward-looking infrastructure is its polymer production facility, which began operating in 2015. It produces four polymers for the manufacture of plasticisers and superplasticisers that are used in concrete mixes. It also has the capacity to produce four more different polymers, according to Andries Marais, Operations Director at CHRYSO Southern Africa.

“We were the first Southern Hemisphere company in the CHRYSO group to manufacture these specific polymers,” says Marais. “We used to import them from the group’s facility in France, when we would bring in around 38 containers every month; now we are able to import the raw materials and require only one container of specialised product each month.”

He highlights that having the polymer plant in South Africa has reduced logistical costs substantially, allowing savings to be passed on to the customer. It also allows much more flexibility in the manufacturing process. These polymers can be combined in any ratio required by customers to suit specific site conditions – addressing vital factors like workability and water demand.

“Every project location will have different environmental conditions, different construction materials and even different cement – so the concrete is not going to perform in the same way,” he explains. “With the production flexibility with our polymers, we can locally customise the solutions for each specific requirement, which really benefits our customers.”

The local facilities give CHRYSO Southern Africa the ability to make immediate changes to its admixture ingredients by varying the proportion of the different polymers – which are readily available in their plants. So responsive is this system that the company can have the necessary product ready for the customer within 24 to 48 hours. 

“If you are reliant on imported polymers, it takes three months to import the necessary stock,” he says. “Then, if a customer’s cement chemistry changes, you might not have the required polymers to make the necessary adjustments to the admixture.”

Keeping the plants up to date and efficient takes continuous investment, emphasises Marais. CHRYSO South African reinvests 3 to 5% of its annual turnover into the facilities, to allow for regular strategic upgrades. For example, the mixer at the Jet Park plant is being upgraded at a significant cost, specifically to support the needs of the mining sector – a project that he expects to complete by the end of 2023. This was done in response to approaching 100% of the current capacity for a specific mining product. 

“As we expand into Africa, we see considerable opportunity for growth in the mining industry – and so we need extra capacity to meet this expected demand,” he says. CHYRSO Southern Africa has been moving into various new countries since 2010. Markets in Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia and Zambia are already being serviced, and an office and toll manufacturing facility has been opened in Kenya.

The investment in the polymer plant alone has been doubled in the past three years, he points out, to increase its efficiencies and to grow its capacity by 100%. This will also allow the company to export polymers to Latin America in 2024, where the necessary formulations can be manufactured. He highlights how CHRYSO Southern Africa’s local facilities have opened up opportunities for businesses in the construction and other sectors. 

“We have created the volumes and cost effectiveness to allow producers of concrete products to thrive,” he says. “We also nurture skills by employing post-graduates in our Jet Park plant, as well as to develop our research and development capacity to investigate formulations. We rely on concrete technologists in developing the products themselves.”

The manufacturing process is conducted at atmospheric pressure and below 80 degrees Celsius, which assists in addressing efforts by CHRYSO Southern Africa and its customers to reduce their carbon emissions. Marais says that the company has been monitoring its carbon footprint in recent years and is committed to steadily reducing this factor to 50% of current levels by 2030.

Quality is also a key consideration in all three plants countrywide, where the ISO 9001 quality management system is rigorously applied. He adds that the same attention is paid to environmental management through ISO 14001, and to safety through ISO 45001.