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Robust solution for man and material handling

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The lastest preference of cement plants are a new set of elevators that work on the Rack & Pinion principle. The Rack and Pinion principle is simplicity beyond question with 100 percent mechanical efficiency providing precise and positive control in operations for transportation to unlimited heights.Cement plants have many tall structures like preheaters, CCR (Central Control Room), and Cement Silo which encompasses heaters, kiln arrangement and the pressure regulating systems. The height of the preheater varies from 110 meters to 150 meters. Climbing up and down with steps on this structure during construction, regular maintenance and operation with or without material is tedious task. This wastes the time and energy, and is unsafe.The conventional Traction (wire rope type of elevators) does not suit this application as its sensitive components are exposed to dust and heat. Conventional elevators also require supporting guide structure (RCC wall or steel cage) which are costlier than lifts. Self supported Rack and pinion elevators overcome these limitations and are more suitable for this application and becoming more popular among cement plants. Almost all the new cement plants now consider these Elevators in project planning stage itself.Rack and Pinion Elevator: The elevators comprise two main units: Car (Cage) with drive unit and the mast structure. The drive unit is attached to the main frame of the car on vibration damping brackets, and gives a positive drive to the pinion through a vibration absorbing direct coupling and a worm and screw reduction gear box.The Car operates on the mast and is guided by individually adjustable ball bearing guide rollers. The pinion meshes with rack on the mast thereby providing positive drive to the system. Through electrical power, the motor drives the pinion, which in turn drives the cage upwards or downwards. Control of the elevator is through push buttons i.e. Semi Automatic Control System. Operation of the Elevator is possible from both the car as well as the landings. The mast structure on which the car runs comprises 1.5 m long mast sections bolted together. Each mast section consists of lattice work of steel tubes and angle profiles welded together. These sections are provided with a precision cut rack with which the drive pinion meshes. The mast structure is bolted to the wall by bolts.The Elevator is provided with top and bottom limit cams which actuate limit switches attached to the lift car preventing over travel and causes the car to stop automatically at the top/ bottom landings. Individual cams are provided on the mast for stopping the car at the intermediate landings.Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) gives jerk free operation during start and stoppage of lift. Lift is provided with electromagnetic and fail safe break to avoid free fall. Cabin of lift is closed from all side to avoid entry of dust.Safety

  • Ascent Limit Switch: Ascent limit switch defines the upper travel limit of the lift. Two-ascent limit switches are provided as a safety measure to prevent the lift from over traveling, the first prevents over travel and the second acts if the first fails and stops the lift. Even then if the lift travels up, the topmost mast is provided with a half rack to prevent over travel.
  • Descent Limit Switch: Similarly two descent limit switches are provided; they define the lower travel limit of the lift.
  • Limit Switch on Cage Entrance and Landing Door: Electro Mechanical locks are provided on both doors as a safety measure. The lift will not operate until the doors are properly closed. The doors cannot be opened during operation / travel of the cage, thus the operator has control on the door
  • Safety Device To Prevent Free Fall: Centrifugal brakes are provided to prevent free-fall, in case of a free fall the centrifugal brake are operated and they do not allow the speed of the lift to exceed 40-44mtrs/ min.
  • Manual Brake Release Device For Emergency Decent: In case of a power failure or such emergencies the lift will stop instantly, manual brake release devices are provided if it has to be brought to the nearest landing. The operator has to release these brakes which are placed with the motor and can be brought down to the nearest landing.
  • Emergency Light & Hooter Arrangement: These basic arrangements are provided in case of an emergency.
  • Phase Failure Relay: In case of failure of any phase (three phase) the lift does not start.
  • Flap Arrangement for Safer Exit: Landing arrangement provided for people to move out of the cage.
  • Barricade Arrangement in Total to Protect Lift: The Lift is provided by a barricade arrangement to avoid any external medium getting in the vicinity of the lift.
  • Lock Out Master Switch: A key on the control panel is provided with a master lock, the lift can be operated only when the authorized person in charge of the lift unlocks the lock of the panel.
  • Self Braking Electric Motors: The motors provided for the lift are electromagnetic brake motors, which act as means of safety device in case of power failure. In such a case the lift could be brought down to the nearest landing by inching method.
  • Half Rack: The top most rack is a half rack provided to guard the lift in case the lift over travels, the provision of half-mast will not allow the lift to run over it.

Suitability for old cement plantRack and pinion type lift does not require contentious support, or heavy foundation, or lift motor room. It is more compact and easy for erection and dismantling. It can be stopped at any height of total installation. Few of the old plant has installed wire rope (traction) type lift, however installation of these lifts are laborious and requires R.C.C. duct for continuous support to its guide rail. It also requires enclosed head room at top of duct to place the motor and control panel. It requires heavy foundation for rails and buffers. Overall rope type lifts are more costly than rack and pinion type lift. Many of the old mini cement plants don?t have lifting arrangement at high rise structure. These plants can be installed with rack and pinion type lift without more expenditure on civil construction work. This lift is found to be definitely economical over the period of its operation.Lift is used in following location:

  • Preheater buildings
  • Central Control Room
  • Packing Plant
  • Power Plant
  • Central Control Room

APPLICATION

  • For Erection of the Plant & Machinery: During erection of preheater building, lifts facilitate to carry men and material.
  • Quality inspection during construction: Consultants, engineers and supervisors can visit the place of work frequently to check the accuracy and quality of work. Lift is installed in stages hence one can keep track of quality from initial work.
  • For maintenance during operation: PM Lift becomes an instant utility device which helps in immediate action in case of break down at any level. Technical staff and required tools can be conveniently moved for maintenance. In case of an accident or a mishap the constraint of reaching high heights becomes a problem thus causing damage to life or property.

ECONOMY

Marginal capital investment on installation of PM Lift is found to be profitable over long term use, saving on time and energy.A. D. Bhosale is a graduate in Civil Engineering, from College of Engg., Pune with more than 10 years of experience in Project Planning, Execution. Presently working with Universal Construction Machinery as a SBU Head .

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Concrete

WCA’s annual conference

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At the World Cement Association’s annual conference the WCA Director, Emir Adiguzel addressed the global cement industry to outline the challenges and opportunities facing the global cement industry.

The conference held in Nanjing, had industry leaders, innovators and stakeholders in attendance to discuss the future of cement production and sustainability. The WCAA director emphasised on the cement industry’s stern commitment to sustainability; spoke about the global cement demand and market dynamics, projecting a period of stagnation from 2024-2030 with growth expected only in the Middle east, India and Africa; about the challenges and opportunities in carbon capture technology hat show promise but will need further development and substantial investment as well as about the strategic initiatives and collaboration within the industry in improving sustainability and operational performance.

Adiguzel concluded his address by highlighting the crucial point where the global cement industry stands by saying “Collaboration within the World Cement Association is essential for sharing knowledge and aligning on long-term objectives. Ensuring the industry’s resilience and adaptation to evolving market dynamics is crucial for the survival of independent cement producers”.

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Economy & Market

We are shaping the future of clean air

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Monil Parikh, Managing Director, Techflow Enterprises Pvt Ltd, leads us to a better understanding of how cutting-edge designs and advanced technologies are revolutionising the process of filtration, driving efficiency and environmental responsibility within the cement sector.

Tell us about your air pollution control systems.
Techflow Enterprises, operating from our expansive 30,000 sq m facility, which is one of India’s largest, manufactures a comprehensive suite of air pollution control systems specifically designed for cement plants. Our solutions include:

Pulse Jet Bag Filters: Employing compressed air for efficient cleaning, these capture fine dust particles generated during grinding and packing. Techflow’s bag filters are designed to restrict the outlet emission up to 5mg/Nm3.
Electrostatic Precipitators (ESPs): Ideal for ultra-fine particulate matter in kiln exhaust gases, ESPs utilise an electric field for superior dust capture with 99.9 per cent capacity.
Centrifugal Fans: We offer various fans like induced draft (ID) fans for draft creation, process fans for dust-laden air transport, and kiln fans for high-temperature gas streams.
Techflow’s commitment to quality is evident in our proven track record. We are actively supplying solutions to leading cement players like Adani Cements, Ambuja and ACC Cement, Dalmia Bharat Cement and Wonder Cement. Our installations across India and Asia stand as a testament to our expertise in handling cement plant dust control challenges.

How do your products and systems integrate with cement plants?
Techflow’s air pollution control systems seamlessly integrate into your existing cement plant. Our pulse jet bag filters fit effortlessly downstream of grinding mills and packing stations, effectively capturing fine dust particles generated during these processes. Electrostatic Precipitators (ESPs) excel in kiln exit gas streams, working alongside existing cyclones to achieve ultra-fine particulate control, a critical step in maintaining clean air emissions.
Techflow’s comprehensive offering of centrifugal fans ensures a perfect fit for any application. Our ID fans seamlessly integrate into the kiln system, creating the necessary draft to pull exhaust gases through the air pollution control equipment. Process fans, strategically placed throughout the plant, efficiently convey dust-laden air from various generation points, like clinker coolers and raw material handling, towards the filtration units. This modular approach minimises disruption during installation and ensures optimal dust collection across your entire cement production process.
How do your innovative designs better the process of filtration at cement plants bringing efficiency to the process?
Techflow’s commitment to innovation translates to superior filtration efficiency and operational cost savings for cement plants. Our pulse jet bag filters incorporate features like:

  • High-efficiency filter media: Designed for specific dust types, this media minimises pressure drop across the filter, reducing energy consumption.
  • Improved flue gas entry design
  • Low Pressure Cleaning Systems
  • Optimised pulse cleaning systems: These systems efficiently dislodge dust cake buildup using compressed air, maximising filter media life, and minimising downtime.

Our ESPs utilise advanced electrode designs to enhance particle collection and reduce maintenance intervals. Furthermore, Techflow’s centrifugal fans are meticulously crafted for superior aerodynamic performance, leading to lower energy consumption and improved overall plant efficiency.
Techflow has developed a SMART-LINK automation module for better maintenance and real-time remote tracking of performance of each equipment. Cement plants equipped with Techflow’s systems experience reduced operational costs, minimised downtime and compliance with ever-evolving environmental regulations.

What is the key differentiator between traditional filters and modern filters?
Traditional bag filter systems often relied on manual cleaning methods, leading to inconsistent performance, increased downtime, and potential worker exposure to dust. Modern pulse jet bag filters, like those offered by Techflow, address these limitations.
Our systems leverage automated cleaning mechanisms, ensuring consistent filtration efficiency and minimal operator intervention. Additionally, advanced filter media materials in Techflow’s bag filters offer superior dust capture capabilities compared to traditional fabric filters.
This commitment to modern technology translates to a safer and more efficient and environmentally friendly dust control solution for cement plants.

Can your designs be customised as per the requirement of the customers?
At Techflow, we understand that every cement plant has unique dust control requirements. That is why we prioritise customisation across our entire product range:

Pulse Jet Bag Filters: Filter media type and micron rating based on dust properties, number of filter bags, and pulse cleaning system configuration like cycle time and pressure can all be adjusted to optimise performance for your specific dust and airflow. The system can be designed to achieve less than 5mg/Nm3 outlet emission standards as well.

  • Electrostatic Precipitators (ESP): ESP design can be customised with features like the number of electrode rows, electrode spacing, and power input like voltage and current to achieve the desired dust collection efficiency for your specific outlet emission capacity less than 20mg/Nm3.
  • Centrifugal Fans: Fan designs are tailored by adjusting factors like impeller diameter, blade design, and motor size to meet the specific pressure and flow requirements of various processes within a cement plant.

This focus on customisation ensures Techflow’s air pollution control systems perfectly match your cement plant’s needs, guaranteeing optimal dust capture and efficient operation.

What is the role of technology and automation in building filtration systems?
Techflow has designed a SMART-LINK System that can be integrated to our equipment which tracks and monitors performance of equipment in real time.

  • Continuous diagnostics
  • Condition-based maintenance
  • Prevention of unplanned downtime
  • Early problem detection using AI
  • Data collection for process optimisation and efficiency maximisation
  • Auto alert with warning driving timely human interactions
  • Remote maintenance assistance by Techflow Team.

What are the major challenges in the filtration process and your system integration at cement plants?
The cement industry’s focus on sustainability, higher production and diverse fuel sources creates filtration hurdles. Adapting to changing dust properties, handling increased dust loads, and integrating seamlessly within space constraints are key challenges.
Techflow tackles these issues through advanced design techniques, exploration of innovative filter media, and modular system design. This ensures our filtration systems remain adaptable, efficient and seamlessly integrated within your cement plant, empowering your success.

How do you plan to further better your products and bring innovation in the future?
At Techflow, we are not just building filtration systems, we are shaping the future of clean air in the Indian cement industry. After successful expansion of the manufacturing facility in 2023, now it is time to improve designs and process optimisation. The future holds exciting possibilities: next-generation filter media with self-cleaning properties and
extended lifespans, minimising maintenance and maximising efficiency.
Techflow’s legendary after-sales support is about to get even better. We are expanding our global service network to provide you with 24/7 access to a team of India’s most experienced filtration specialists, ensuring your system operates flawlessly throughout its lifecycle.
Together, we will lead the way towards a sustainable future, paving the path for a greener tomorrow with green cement.

  • Kanika Mathur

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Economy & Market

Digitalisation is changing the logistics landscape

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Haresh Calcuttawala, CEO and Co-Founder, Trezix, explains how their platform streamlines export processes, optimises logistics operations, and addresses the challenges faced by the cement industry.

How does your platform help in the compliance of cement exports?
The Trezix platform helps with the end-to-end processes for exporters, ensuring complete visibility of these processes focusing on shipments, documents, compliances, etc. The platform is also integrated with various stakeholders’ part of the export process including integration with Unified Logistics Integration Platform (ULIP) by the Government of India.

What is the impact of your systems on the cost and productivity of a cement plant?
The Trezix platform helps to optimise the turnaround time, visibility of shipment and improving efficiencies, which results in optimisation in logistics cost and improvement in working capital.

What are the major challenges in logistics and how can that be resolved?
A major challenge in the cement industry is the logistics cost and time for delivery. This can only be resolved with faster turnaround time, complete visibility of shipments, delivery lead time and process control to adhere to compliance.

Tell us your views on the change technology is bringing to logistics.
In the cement industry, so far technology has been more focused on internal process, and optimising demand and supply in the area of supply chain. However, now the focus has completely shifted to external stakeholders and their processes, and how have we integrated processes to further optimise the logistics execution.

Can your systems and solutions be customised based on customer requirements?
Every customer has some unique value proposition for their customer segment. Trezix has flexibility by way of configuration to adhere to industry needs and specific customer needs, keeping in mind the regulatory processes are not deviated to fulfil statutory requirements.

How do you foresee the face of logistics changing for the cement industry?
Digitalisation is one of the biggest waves you can see in the logistics space, which is changing the face of the industry. Digitalisation is changing the logistics landscape. Various concepts like Just In Time (JIT) to customer delivery are now a reality. Vehicle utilisation, fuel efficiency, delivery visibility, vehicle tracking through RFID, Fastag, FOIS (rail receipt tracking), container/cargo tracking across geography is now a reality.

  • Kanika Mathur

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