13 educational sessions for producers at ConExpo-Con/Agg

By |  March 5, 2020

Logo: ConExpo-Con/Agg 2020Aggregate producers who attend ConExpo-Con/Agg 2020 have up to 13 aggregate-specific education sessions they can attend.

A variety of speakers will offer best practices related to aggregate processing, community relations, finance and other areas fundamental to the quarry business. Most sessions will take place at the Westgate, which is adjacent to the Las Vegas Convention Center. Here is an overview of the aggregate-specific sessions available.


9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Drill & Blast Improvement Project Using Photogrammetry, GPS & Drill Navigation Systems

David Stewart, CRH, and Tamara Whitaker, R.A. McClure
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

This session presents a case study of the Warren County Quarry in Camak, Georgia, where initial blasting generated high percentages of oversize, back break, poor floor control and poor fragmentation. Through implementing a proactive drill and blast design and technology like automated borehole logs, 3-D photogrammetry, blast design software, angle borehole drilling, an unmanned aerial system, and geological analysis, the quarry realized significant measurable improvement. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Learn how a drill and blast optimization program can improve primary throughput

2. Know how to reduce secondary breakage and fines

3. Understand how to improve efficiencies with loading and hauling of shot rock


Headshot: Mark Krause


11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Crushing 101

Mark Krause, McLanahan Corp.
Westgate (Ballroom B)

This session will provide an overview of crushing. Topics to be covered include types of crushers available, the features and benefits of each along with expected production capabilities, end products and factors affecting their efficiency. By the end of the session, attendees should understand the effects of speed, stroke and angle for the various types of crushers. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Learn about the different types of primary and secondary crushers

2. Understand the pros and cons associated with the different types of crushers

3. Get to know site conditions to consider when choosing crushers and how to optimize the process given a particular crusher


1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Concrete Mix Design: What To Look For

Ken Hover, Cornell University
South Hall (S232)

Concrete Mix Design can be as simple as the time-honored 1:2:3 blend of cement, sand and stone. Or, it can be as complicated as one, two, three or four cementitious materials and up to five aggregate bins. But there are a few fundamental principles that apply to all concrete mixes, and understanding those principles can help you troubleshoot, modify or adjust a mix to produce the results needed. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Understand why water control is so essential

2. Know what to look for in aggregate size, shape and textures

3. Recognize the advantages and disadvantages of supplementary cementitious materials and admixtures.




1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Screening 101

Joe Schlabach, Deister Machine Co.
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

Screening is the critical “cashbox” of an aggregate operation. This course, intended for novice plant design personnel, will present the basic concepts necessary to understand screening operations. Learn about essential items such as stratification, separation, bed depth and the effects of stroke, screen media and their application, amplitude and speed. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Gain several tips to help existing screening operations

2. Gain an understanding of future plant expansions


Photo: Patrick Reaver


3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Screening 201

Patrick Reaver, Astec Mobile Screens
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

Understanding how screens and crushers work together in a system can help maximize performance and improve profitability. This session will provide a more thorough look into screening technology and the different types of screens offered. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Learn about the interaction between screens and crushers and how that affects production and gradation

2. Gain a better understanding of the types of screens offered and how to choose the right one for their application


Headshot: John Bennington_Superior


11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Washing & Classifying 101

John Bennington, Superior Industries
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

As quarries progress into their reserves, operations are processing material with a higher level of clay and silt. While some materials may require only rinsing, others require scrubbing to remove clay and other deleterious materials. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Gain knowledge of aggregated washing techniques, maintenance routines, classify tanks, screw versus screens, troubleshooting, common washing problems, and consequences of wrong-sized equipment


1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Equipment Operator Best Practices

Matt Beinlich and Kurtis Wilson, Komatsu America Corp.
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

This course is designed for quarry managers and site foremen to have a better understanding of how to maximize machine operation efficiencies. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Gain an understanding of the recommended best practices to maximize efficiencies of wheel loader, dozer, truck and excavator operation

2. Learn about safety and proper pre-operation inspection processes


Headshot: David Perkins, TACA


3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Be Prepared: Protect Your Operation from New Tactics in Community Opposition

David Perkins, Texas Aggregates & Concrete Association
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

Your company probably already has a community relations program in place to positively engage with your operation’s surrounding community and address neighbors’ concerns. But do you have a plan to mitigate today’s tech savvy and engaged activist? Today’s opposition is comprised of well-connected people who utilize social media, word of mouth and scientific data to bolster their position and make our industry look bad.

This panel discussion will look at new ways community organizers are targeting aggregate operations, spreading misinformation and attempting to harness opposition in order to disrupt or block operations. Attendees will learn what to look for and gain tips on how to proactively respond in a way that presents an operation as a good neighbor and an asset to the community.


9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Maximizing Conveyor Performance – Industry Standards Versus Real-World Application

Dick McConnell, Flexco, and Mike Cremeens, Shaw Almex
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

Contrasting industry standards with real-world applications, attendees of this session will learn about conveyor belt construction, operational forces, transition distances, tracking issues and other performance influences. This interactive presentation will provide the information necessary to better understand and troubleshoot real-world belt conveyor performance issues. Both U.S. and European nomenclature will be covered as part of the belt conveyor standards. Those who attend can expect to:

1. Learn how conveyor belt construction and quality is designed to operate on a conveyor structure

2. Understand rated tension versus operating tension and how to calculate both.

3. Know how to diagnose and resolve transition distance violations

4. Acquire expanded troubleshooting knowledge of conveyor operation


11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Conveyors 101

Jeff Jurasits, ASGCO
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

Conveyors are the lifeline to any aggregate plant’s productivity. This presentation will review a “Conveyor 101” program that has proven successful at facilities across the country.

Get safety guidelines for working on or around conveyors, tips on reducing fugitive material and dust (and solutions to control it), and ideas on how to implement a conveyor inspection and maintenance service program that works for your plant. Those who attend can expect to:

1. Gain a better understanding of conveyor systems

2. Learn about conveyor belts

3. Understand how different conveyor components work and how they affect your plant’s performance


1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Aggregates Financials for Operations Managers

Jeff Clark, Cemex
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

The financial statements are for accountants, right? Yet, many times we think that we have had a good month only to be disappointed by the final numbers. What happened? This class will provide the participants with a working understanding of the financial statements in actual terms that can be understood. Those who attend this session can expect to:

1. Learn about the basic concepts of sales, production and inventory

2. Gain an understanding of how the money flows and how the bottom line is calculated


9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Autonomous Haulage: Lessons Learned from Surface Mining

Anthony Cook, Komatsu
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

This course will look at the history of autonomous haulage in large surface mining operations, consider lessons learned over the past 12 years of commercial deployments, and present current best practices for successful implementation of autonomous haulage technologies in varied customer environments.


Photo: Wade Lippert


3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Service Application Through System Performance

Wade Lippert, KPI-JCI & Astec Mobile Screens
Westgate (Pavilion 10)

This course will examine the proper way to utilize crushing and screening equipment. Attendees will look at jaws, horizontal shaft impactors, cones and screens. Those who attend can expect to:

1. Identify the do’s and don’ts and how to properly balance a system by making the correct choices with wear parts and settings

2. Learn best maintenance practices and how to develop a good maintenance program that includes documentation of historical data 

Information for this article courtesy of ConExpo-Con/Agg.

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