Dawson Making Frac Sand from Tailings
The jet pump removes sand from a land-based stockpile.
Mine sand, right, is run through the Jet- Pump system, where the process scrubs and rounds the grains, pictured on the left.
Since 2008, Ricky Dawson, of Bluff Creek WAM, has been using the Pump Vacuum Systems (PVS) JetPump to mine and separate aggregates from sand in two locations in Louisiana. (See IDR, January/February 2008, Jet Pump Drives Portable Unit that Re-Mines Tailings.) Because the sand did not meet the size requirements for concrete or hydraulic fracturing (frac) sand, it was stockpiled.
However, this year Dawson discovered that if he ran the sand through the jet pump system, the result was sand that did pass the test for frac sand, and he has applied for a patent on the system.
“The water enters the JetPump at 150 PSI, moving at 149.5 feet per second (fps),” he said. “In the discharge line, the flow is reduced to around 30 psi and 25 fps. In this transformation, the sand is scrubbed and rounded.
“In our operation, we have our JetPump on the suction of the dredge, which gives us around 50 percent more production, and another JetPump in the sand tank. We also have a dry mining unit on a hopper for re-mining old tailing piles, thus taking a waste product and making saleable product,” said Dawson.
Dawson formed PVS in conjunction with Pearce Pump Supply to explore applications for Pearce’s JetPump technology. Dawson’s company Bluff Creek WAM is the business entity that is exploring potential uses for the technology.Edit Module