Silos are structures that are utilized for storing bulk materials. These are used in various fields and industries to store end products of distinct processes – mainly to store grains, cement, coal, food and such other products. Silos are divided into three major categories based upon their orientation, functionality and construction.
- Cement silos:
These are used for storing cement and other powdered materials like cement. Cement silos are further divided into two classes – Low-level silos (portable ) and Static upright silos. Low level ones are very advantageous because of their mobility as it helps in transportation. One other major plus of non invasive silos is that they come equipped with electronic systems that reflect the exact status of the stored quantity indoors. Static silos are not mobile but they’re also advantageous as they require lesser maintenance. Static silos also boast of a larger capacity, they can store up to 80 tons of a material.
- Tower silos:
As the name suggests, these are constructed in form of towers – cylindrical towers to be precise. These towers can be constructed with a variety of materials like concrete, wood, steel and others. These are heavy and not mobile, consequently such traits make them difficult to unload and transport. In the event of tower silos, transportation is usually practiced in train cars. The weight comes to aid the packaging of materials inside the silos, which is the only merit induced because of being too heavy.
These are built with concrete as the construction material. The structure is held together with the help of reinforced steel round the circumference. The reinforced concrete provides great durability and strength to the building.
There are few other types of silo storage like bunker silos and bag silos, but they are not used on a larger scale.
Utility is the thing that makes silo storage systems a pre-requisite for any organization involved in production. Additionally, it’s hard to overlook the advantages of Silo storage systems over orthodox storage systems.
- Better protection for perishable grains:
Grains are perishable too, even though they have a good shelf life. Silo storage systems help in increasing that shelf life even further by providing better protection.
- Large storage in a limited space:
Due to their definite shape, they provide greater storage in a limited space. It helps in minimizing the property requirement for set up of storage.
- Minimizes the effect of moisture and other harsh conditions:
Typical engineering ensures that moisture and other harsh climatic conditions doesn’t affect the quality of the material stored inside.
- Easy unloading:
Silos include a mechanism of unloading which helps in unloading the materials for the purpose of transportation.