The development of a new means of measuring the relative abrasivity of a slurry came about by necessity in 1967 during a full scale loop test of a 560 H.P. reciprocating pump handling magnetite slurry. In order to evaluate the life of expendable fluid end parts, the question of the amount of attrition in a re-circulated slurry had to be considered.
The device used to measure the relative abrasivity of various slurries consists in general of a standard ½” x 1″ metal wear block, driven at a rate of 48 strokes per minute, with a 200 mm stroke, riding in the bottom of a tray containing a 50% by weight slurry of the solids mixed in water. (Some tests are run in actual wet slurries as supplied.) A dead weight of five pounds is applied.
Standard procedures were adopted and a series of tests on available slurries and “pure” minerals were made. The test data was examined and it was noted that the abrasivity, or loss of metal wear block, was not the same for each incremental run, indicating a change of characteristics of the solid particles – apparently a “breaking down” due to the friability of the material.