Pipe Conveyor for Alternative Fuels

Pipe Conveyor Transport

Pipe Conveyor for Alternative Fuels

Operational Gains with minimal Disruption and without any Material Loss
At its cement plant in Bernburg Germany Schwenk Zement KG installed an elevated pipe conveyor system to transport alternative fuels to the feeding system of the main burner. A pipe conveyor was selected because of its high reliability and zero product loss.
(ed. WoMaMarcel - 01/12/2014)
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The fully closed pipe conveyor system makes elevated bulk material transport safer, more environmentally friendly and energy efficient.

Schwenk Zement KG is replacing its old drag chain conveyor line with a modern pipe conveyor from Beumer Group. Requiring a solution that would transport alternative fuels such as crushed plastic material, textiles and paper from the warehouse to the feeding system of the oven in their cement plant in Bernburg, Germany, this fully closed conveying system makes transporting bulk material more environmentally friendly and energy efficient. Maintenance costs are also considerably lower and the system can be optimally adapted to the ambient conditions.

Sustainable Cement Production with Alternative Fuels

Schwenk’s product diversity and production capacity make the cement plant in Bernburg one of the largest and most efficient building material plants in Germany. The production of cement along the river Saale has a rich history due to the prevalence of high-quality deposits of limestone in this area. The plant has been in existence since 1960. Schwenk took over the plant in 1990 and tore down the existing systems to build an entirely new plant.

Today, Schwenk’s product portfolio includes a wide range of efficient, specialised cement marked by consistently high quality. The company produces the ideal product using modern mixing technology, as required for tunnel, road and well construction, as well as for geothermal and environment engineering.

One topic of great importance to the Schwenk plant is sustainable production. Production of cement has always been one of the most energy-intensive operations. This is why Schwenk minimises the use of primary fuels such as coal and oil and focuses increasingly on substitute fuels. These substitute fuels are mainly a mixture of high calorific waste materials, comprised mostly of plastic and packaging residues and textiles. They are processed to high-grade fuels with defined product parameters in external processing plants.

Heat-intensive Processes

For the manufacturing of cement, limestone is quarried, crushed and homogenised with additional raw materials. Belt conveyors then transport the crushed material with other materials from the blending bed to the plant. It is ground to the necessary grain size in the raw mills and then dried. The raw meal is then homogenised and temporarily stored in large silos.

To obtain Portland cement clinker, a coarse intermediate product, the raw meal is first transported into the cyclone preheater, then into the calcinator, both powered by alternative fuels. The limestone portion of the raw meal is deacidified at temperatures of over 950 degrees Celsius. The material then moves into the rotary kiln where it is burned at temperatures of approx. 1450 °C.

Up until now, Schwenk relied on a drag chain conveyor line for transporting the fuels from the storehouse to the feeding systems of its main burner. The baffle plates on these mechanical continuous conveyors are mounted to an endless chain, transporting the bulk material in a trough. “We had been using this system for more than ten years. This meant that we had to put more and more maintenance work into it”, says Dirk Fabian, production manager at Schwenk in Bernburg.

Another problem: after further development of the dosing technology, the drag chain conveyor was no longer able to transport enough bulk material, with a density of only 0.2 t/m2, to the weigh feeders (and thus to the main burner). “We were looking for an alternative solution that would be ecological as well as low in maintenance”, explains Dirk Fabian. In addition, the new conveyor should also be optimally adapted to the curved routing in the plant.

Comprehensive Expertise, optimum Support

For the building material manufacturer, Beumer Group was their first choice supplier of the optimal conveying technology. Schwenk has a long-standing and close partnership with Beumer as an internationally operating system supplier. Beumer has provided Schwenk Putztechnik GmbH & Co. KG, headquartered in Ulm in southern Germany, with several Beumer paletpac high-capacity layer palletisers, equipped with the newly developed twin-belt turning device.

Beumer has been well-established in the building industry for nearly 80 years as a supplier of conveying technology solutions. Beumer has bundled its comprehensive expertise in the building material industry and established different Centres of Competence, in order to offer optimal support for global building material manufacturers by offering single-source solutions. The “Pipe Conveyor” segment is one such Centre of Competence. These centres are in charge of worldwide project management and sales. They collect and process the expertise from the individual local group companies and pass it on to the global Group experts in each respective field.

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