Shell construction is almost complete for a large gypsum storage east of Las Vegas, Nevada. Pabco Gypsum is a vertically integrated mining and manufacturing facility that produces 110 million square meters of drywall per year. The new dome replaces a 50-year-old steel dome.
The Monolithic Dome built by South Industries is 215 feet diameter by 77 feet tall and can store 50,000 tons — almost 1,000,000 cubic feet — of bulk powder gypsum. The gypsum is mined on-site, crushed, processed, and stored in the dome until it’s needed.
The gypsum is removed via four, 4-foot by 4-foot openings along the floor. The material drops through the openings onto a conveyor and moved to the neighboring manufacturing plant. Front end loaders push the pile to the openings to keep the process moving.
Pabco Gypsum manufactures gypsum board — also called drywall, wallboard, Sheetrock — for commercial and residential construction across the west. It’s estimated that 7 metric tons of drywall are used in constructing the average US home.