The British Materials Handling Board Technology.

Hopper design was virtually a black art until the 1960’s, when Andrew Jenike published Bull 123 of the University of Utah experimental station. This was accompanied by a powder testing device to measure the shear strength and wall friction of a compacted bulk solid and a design process that allowed the specification of the hopper wall inclination and outlet size that would guarantee movement of the total contents during discharge and reliable flow through the outlet.

This publication initiated international interest in the topic as a specific academic discipline and various universities and research and manufacturing organisations formed specialist groups to study powder technology.

The UK government instituted Warren Springs Laboratory to exploit research into this and other topics and specialist exhibitions followed that focussed entirely on solids handling. The universities of New South Wales created TUNRA to provide an industrial service and specialist web sites emerged that provided information and forums for the dissemination of practical information. Walker introduced a rotary shear cell to provide a continuous measurement of shear and devices were developed to measure bulk tension, cohesion, attrition and wear. Later improved models were developed through the Wolfson centre and some consulting organisations.

An important area that offers industry the potential for improved performance is in applying such concepts as plane flow, progressive extraction, expanded flow, active and passive pressures, incipient and continuous shear and the use of measured physical properties in design, especially ubiquitous wall friction that applied wherever bulk material is required to move.


Hopper design was virtually a black art until the 1960’s, when Andrew Jenike published Bull 123 of the University of Utah experimental station.

Good Practice

BMHB promotes good and safe practices and identify practical handling needs throughout the industry. We also identify areas for research and produce documents, guide notes and data. Read More

About Us

The British Materials Handling Board was formed by the Government in 1979. A key objective was to act as a focus for the dissemination of knowledge and good practice in the materials handling industry. Read More

Solids Handling

Serious commissioning and operating problems are found to arise much more frequently in plants that handle solids that in those that handle liquids and gasses. Read More


This page contains links to some of our most popular guidance publications we have produced. Please feel free to order our test and design guides and share them with your colleagues. Read More


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