24hr Emergency Service


Services Overview

  • Assessment of structure and flow issues
  • Structural Support on the Steel Ash Silo
  • Buildup clearing by the use of whips, drills, Cardox CO2 Charges, and proprietary tools

flow issues in silo


At a Midwest Power Station, a steel Fly Ash Silo faced substantial buildup and structural issues. The client was in urgent need to get their Steel Ash Silo emptied before any more structural damages or dangerous conditions could occur. The 2,000 tons of non-flowing ash had been residing in the tank since the 1980’s. The Fly Ash had undergone years of water intrusion, and compaction, resulting in a rock hard state. A large crack was identified on a section of the silos steel plate, needing ongoing monitoring and subsequent structural reinforcement. Additionally, the client had very strict “Zero Dust” tolerances so IABM would have to design and construct “containment” areas around each discharge point in order to arrest any dust. After promptly mobilizing on-site, they conducted a thorough assessment, and made a successful plan to eliminate the buildup utilizing innovative methods, including Cardox CO2 Blasting, Pneumatic whips, and a range of specialized tools and proprietary methodologies.

Clean Out and Structural Steel Work

When energized by a small electrical charge, the chemical heater instantly burns and converts to fifty liters of gas. The conversion expands the CO2 volume and builds up pressure inside the tube until it causes a shear disc, located at the end of the tube to burst, which releases up to 18 cubic feet of CO2 gas through directional discharge nozzles. This creates a powerful force of pressure, up to 40,000 psi, strong enough to safely blast buildup off the walls in closed structures.

Cardox tubes filled with CO2.

One of the solutions for their hardened material build up was to shoot Cardox tubes filled with CO2.

This process can dislodge tons of buildup in milliseconds. In order to administer these, strategic holes were drilled through the silo’s wall to install Cardox ports to place the Cardox system. The crew blasted off loose debris and broke up the hard fly ash into small manageable pieces which were discharged into waiting dumpsters.

As the project progressed, the structural integrity of the silo became compromised. The structural cracks that were in the silo from the start became worse and several steel plates began to buckle after the material inside the silo was removed. That is when the crew had to shift gears and focus on the structural problem at hand.

Structural Steel Work

IABM was tasked with additional steel work during the Ash Removal project. The client's Ash Silo had begun to seriously buckle during the emptying portion of the project two separate times. The silo showed signs of severe degradation, corrosion and structural cracking so extensive that the top third of the silo began to buckle on the northwest side. A structural support plan was then put in place to arrest the buckling. IABM was tasked with carrying out the completion of the welding of all the steel support pieces on the exterior of the silo. The crew’s on-site welders began the structural support work while the ash removal was halted temporarily. The welding of all the necessary vertical support steel was then completed in a timely manner and the project was completed safely with no additional risks to personnel or the silo.

Once the crew tackled that aspect of the project, we then used our own proprietary tools and methods to effectively clear any remaining material the cardox shots could not reach. When you hire IA Bulk Materials, you can feel confident we will always have a next step to continue pushing to the finish line. We bring such a vast majority of tooling onsite to ensure we always have a way to clear your blockage.


IA Bulk Material was able to use entryways from the top and bottom to work bottom up and top down simultaneously to clear the buildup as efficiently as possible. Once the product was low enough and a safe entry could happen, we used confined space permits to enter the silo and get it 100% empty.


While maintaining compliance with a zero dust policy, IA Bulk Materials was able to get this silo 100% empty and secured from a collapse

silo structural steel work repair

For additional information about our company and services we provide, please give us a call anytime

Call Now Button
error: Content is protected !!