Kiln Control with COSMA
Kiln Control with COSMA


The major costs of clinker production are incurred in kiln pyro-processing, which is the heart of the cement manufacturing process. So it is no surprise that this part of the process received more attention than any other. Any improvements made at the kiln provide potentially huge benefits in production and have significant impact downstream in the grinding process.

Clinker production is a mineralogical process, yet the billions of tons of clinker that have been produced to date have all been produced in plants controlled mostly on elemental chemical data. Bogue equations construct hypothetical mineral compositions that ignore the heat treatment in the kiln. It is no wonder that operators struggle keep these expensive processes in control, with so much crucial information missing.

At last, FCT is first with the COSMA mineral analyser, designed and developed to measure and report the mineralogical composition of materials being processed on-line and in real time.

A complete analysis of clinker mineralogy at the cooler reveals a live picture of the pyro-process and allows corrections to the various parameters that affect clinker quality, before the quality is compromised.

Free lime, NOx and fuel consumption are issues critical to the cost effective operation of a clinker kiln operation. The complete mineral picture presented by the COSMA analyser enable these to be mapped and correlations determined so that effective control strategies may be implemented. Clear understanding of clinker mineralogy gives the best control possibilities.

Clinker Applications - Free Lime and Strength

Clinker burning has long been monitored via the presence of free lime, which can be due to raw meal being inhomogeneous or too coarse, the LSF being too high, or it can be the product of inadequate burning. Laboratory tests take too long to enable close process control and, more often than not, clinker free limes much lower than target are produced as operators find a hard burn kiln is more stable and easier to keep in control.

Clinker Application - Free Lime

Fuel consumption is major casualty of a hard burn kiln, as more fuel is used per kg of clinker produced. Kiln control based on COSMA mineralogical data can increase the operating level of free lime from under 0.5% to an average of over 1%, thereby reducing fuel consumption by some 5% as the burn zone temperature is decreased. A corresponding 5% increase in production is then available from the kiln.

NOx emissions are obviously tied to kiln burning, the levels primarily dependant on how hard a kiln is being burned. Better kiln control available from the clear picture presented by a COSMA analyser can reduce emissions by as much as 40%.

Clinker Applications Free Lime and NOx

The quality of clinker produced from control models based on a comprehensive live picture of the pyro-process will be much improved and consistent. The implications for the cement milling process and final product performance are dramatic. Mill throughput can be maximized with a softer burned clinker and 28 day strengths can be consistently produced.

Firing Alternative Fuels can result in variable energy input to the kiln, as well as the possibility of adding undesirable chemicals to the product, depending on fuel quality and availability. COSMA measures the resultant variations in free lime and the other clinker mineral phases, thus allowing the operator or expert system to compensate for quality variations by closely controlling fuels or raw materials.

Increased profitability is guaranteed from a kiln operation running under optimum conditions

Increased profitability is guaranteed from a kiln operation running under optimum conditions. Moreover, pressure on fuel prices, NOx emissions and quality assurance are looming ever larger as challenges to profitable operation. The COSMA analyser enables these challenges to be successfully met for the first time.

Call us now +61 8 8352 9999 and learn what else COSMA can do for real time.

See more details on the benefits that COSMA can deliver - view Clinker Analysis