Displaying items by tag: UK
UK: Flexicon has launched a weigh hopper with a ‘Fill/Pass’ valve for dilute-phase pneumatic conveying systems. The ‘Fill/Pass’ valve allows material to pass through the valve or to fill a hopper based on weight gain signals transmitted from load cells to the system's controller.
Suspended from three small-scale load cells, the bulk handling company says that the gain-in-weight hopper delivers higher accuracy than loss-of-weight systems requiring higher-capacity load cells. Single or multiple hoppers can be positioned along a common vacuum or positive pressure pneumatic conveying line for the discharging of dry bulk solids into single or multiple process equipment, storage vessels or downstream use points by weight. Downstream of the last ‘Fill/Pass’ valve, the conveying line can be routed to the original material source point or into a dust collection device.
UK: Hanson is spending Euro29m on upgrades at its Ribblesdale cement plant in a seven-year project to improve production efficiency and emissions. In the first six months nearly Euro13m will be spent on improvements and maintenance to enable the plant to meet new dust emission regulations. This is the biggest investment programme at the site since the 1990s and includes a Euro2m replacement of the filters on two cement mills.
“The permitted dust level is being reduced by 66% in April 2017, from 30mg/m2 to 10 - the new equipment will perform better than this,” said plant manager Terry Reynolds. He added that the filters will run well below the new maximum dust emission levels after the installation
The plant will spend Euro7.5m, its largest investment, towards replacing its wet gas scrubber in March 2017. In addition, 75m of ducts have been replaced at a cost of Euro440,000 during a shutdown in January 2017 as part of a five-year improvement plan for the site’s exhaust gas handling system.
Ribblesdale employs 116 people and is supplied by two on-site quarries worked by an 11-person team and a team of contractors managing the loading and hauling of quarry materials. The cement plant has produced cement for projects including the Manchester International Airport, Heysham nuclear power station, Manchester United football stadium, Liverpool’s Roman Catholic cathedral and also now for Hinkley Point C nuclear power station.
UK: Sweden’s BillerudKorsnäs has purchased a minor stake in technology company Hanhaa in order to invest in the so-called ‘internet of packaging.’ The company’s technology allows users to track the location and the condition of deliveries in real time and on a large scale across carriers and countries. The investment is being made by a development wing of BillerudKorsnäs in order to develop new solutions in the packaging value chain. No value for the transaction has been disclosed but the investment has been described as ‘small’.
“Combining our own core-related skills with the skills of these start-up companies will allow us to create fruitful collaborations and together identify entirely new solutions. We will also draw on our experience and knowledge of bringing products to market on an industrial scale. Together with Hanhaa, we’re continuing to build tomorrow’s internet of packaging. Expanding our offering of digital solutions will allow us to continue challenging conventional packaging for a sustainable future,” said BillerudKorsnäs Venture Managing Director Anders Persson.
BillerudKorsnäs produces packaging materials and its clients include cement producers.
UK: Bunting Magnetics, a US company specialising in the magnet and magnetic equipment sector, has signed an agreement to acquire Master Magnets, a UK-based manufacturer of magnetic separation equipment. The Redditch-based firm produces magnetic separation, recycling and metal detection equipment to several industries worldwide including the mining, quarrying and aggregate sectors. No value or terms for the deal has been disclosed.
“Master Magnets has deep customer relationships in new markets for us such as mining, quarrying and aggregates. We are especially excited to now be able to offer a large range of ATEX approved electromagnets and mineral separation equipment,” said Simon Ayling, Managing Director of Bunting Magnetics Europe. Ayling will assume operations management responsibility of this new division following the purchase.
Master Magnets was founded in 1978 and currently has 26 employees. The company designs, manufacturers and services a line of industrial magnetic separation equipment including eddy current separators, permanent and electro magnets, including overband magnets, drum magnets and suspension magnets. The company also supplies a range of mineral separation equipment for customers around the world. The company will continue to operate out of its Redditch headquarters in the UK.
UK: The Mineral Products Association (MPA) has welcomed the government’s publication of new procurement guidance including construction materials like cement. The government plans to use local construction materials in infrastructure projects across 18 separate projects by 2020, including rail and roads, and construction such as building and housing refurbishment.
This announcement also follows the new National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline, which set out nearly Euro600bn worth of planned private and public investment, and changes to procurement guidance announced by the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy to make it easier for UK producers to plan and bid for upcoming government contracts.
The MPA is working with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Crown Commercial Service to develop government guidance for local procurement for cement and concrete. This will extend beyond the current guidance for designers which advises the use of BES6001 to specify responsibly and ethically sourced concrete and masonry.
“Cement and concrete are essential for UK infrastructure development and housing, and contribute significantly to the UK economy. We welcome this announcement from Greg Clark MP, which re-confirms the government’s commitment to infrastructure capital expenditure, and supports the future of a local cement industry. The cement and concrete industries employ 18,179 people across the regions, including in rural areas, and are key enablers for the Industrial Strategy,” said Nigel Jackson, chief executive of the MPA.
UK: Tarmac’s Aberthaw Cement Plant has opened a rail facility to despatch bulk cement. The rail depot will mean that trains will be used to transport cement in Wales for the first time in over 20 years. The yard is expected to replace 2500 annual truck movements on the local roads. Jane Hutt, the Welsh Assembly Member for Vale of Glamorgan, officially opened the facility.
“Reducing our road movements by 25% is a significant achievement and it puts us in an even better position to supply materials to our customers across Wales and the south west of England in a more sustainable way. The plant has been in operation for over 100 years and we employ 109 people, the majority of whom live within 10 miles of the site, so this development demonstrates our commitment to the Vale of Glamorgan,” said Aberthaw Cement Plant manager, Chris Bradbury.
UK: SEA-Invest has placed an order for an Eco Hopper from Samson Materials Handling, part of Aumund Group, destined for operation in the Ivory Coast. This product is designed to receive dry bulk materials such as cement clinker, limestone, gypsum and slag from a mobile harbour crane. The Eco Hopper will discharge onto a high-level quayside conveyor at a rate of 1200t/hour or via a dedicated outlet direct to trucks at 700t/hour.
“In a competitive market we need to ensure our service offering is reliable and value for money. Environmental responsibility is something that we take seriously at SEA-Invest. We endeavour to provide efficient, cost effective and environmentally appropriate service and we look forward to developing our port facilities with Samson,” said Sébastien Ghesquiere, Director of SEA-Tech, an engineering subsidiary of SEA-Invest.
Siemens wins Materials Handling Engineers’ Association’s Innovation Award for work at Hanson UK cement plants20 October 2016
UK: Siemens has won the Materials Handling Engineers’ Association’s (MHEA) first Innovation Award for its work on energy efficiency savings at three Hanson UK plants. The work focused on fan and control improvements made to the clinker cooler and kiln systems at three Hanson UK sites, which have saved the company nearly Euro2m in energy savings and reduced CO2 emissions. The award was presented at the MEHA’s BULKEX conference in October 2016.
“It’s great to be recognised for this innovative work, where companies can enjoy long-term benefits from process improvements, and we’re particularly pleased to be the first recipients of this award,“ said Siemens application specialist Gary Palmer who worked on all three of the Hanson upgrades.
UK: Tarmac has launched a cement-packing unit at its Tunstead cement plant in Derbyshire. The Haver and Boecker 10-spout Adams 2000 packing plant increases the plant’s packing capacity. The launch takes place on the site’s 50th anniversary of cement production. The plant will manufacture Tarmac’s range of plastic packed and tubbed cement products for merchant and retail customers. The plant will also be used to house the company’s new 12.5kg mixer bags that were launched earlier in 2016.
“This new plant is an exciting development for us. It enhances our existing UK-wide supply capacity, ensuring we continue to offer customers and end users superior packed cement products, service and supply. As a business with a strong culture of innovation, the plant will use some of our most pioneering developments, such as plastic packaging,” said Kevan Greenhalgh, Packed Business Manager for Tarmac’s Cement business.
The plant has created 23 new jobs at Tunstead, which employs around 450 people. It will also offer training opportunities for existing employees, through the use of the packing plant’s automated technology. The plant launch coincides with the recent upgrading of Tunstead’s rail freight infrastructure, part of Tarmac’s strategy to support sustainable delivery of materials, and cut transport CO2 by 10% by 2020.
Once again Ecocem has shone the torch this week for a rare thing within Europe these days: a growing cement company. Its latest project is an import terminal in Sweden, as part of a deal with Bolidan, which launched on 22 September 2016. This supports an arrangement to supply cement for the Boliden Garpenberg mine. The agreement also includes supply for the Boliden Tara Mines in Ireland.
This follows the announcement to build a new slag grinding plant in Dunkirk, France in early September 2016 and the opening of a new terminal in Runcorn, UK earlier in the year. The 1.4Mt/yr Dunkirk plant is a joint-venture with the steelmaker ArcelorMittal, intended to target markets in north of France and in the UK. Once complete it will join Ecocem’s growing collection of grinding units in Ireland, France and the Netherlands. The slag-cement producer operates a 0.35Mt/yr plant at Dublin, a 0.7Mt/yr plant at Fos in the south of France and a 0.35Mt/yr plant at Moerdijk under its subsidiary Orcem Netherlands.
The focus on the UK makes sense given that Ecocem said that it had made commitments to sell more product in the UK in its first year than its total domestic sales in 2016. This followed the situation where, prior to entering the British market, Ecocem had to stop taking orders in the short term due to demand. If this is actually the case then it is unsurprising to note that Ecocem is also building a second UK terminal at Sheerness at the mouth of the River Thames near to London. As an aside, Francis Flower bought the Scunthorpe ground granulated blast furnace slag (GGBS) plant from Hanson Cement in mid-2015 after the local market regulator requested the sale.
As Charlie Zeynel, ZAG International, says in an interview to be published in the October 2016 issues of Global Cement Magazine, that supplementary cementitous materials, including slags, in cement blends has grown worldwide, particularly in Europe and Japan, where GGBS cement represents around 25% and 30% of cement sales respectively. Zeynel goes on to say that GGBS usage is set to rise in other parts of the world, particularly the US, but this helps to explain the market Ecocem is operating in within northern Europe.
Ecocem seems well aware of the potential for slag cements in the US because it is attempting to build a Euro45m grinding plant Vallejo, California under its Orcem Americas subsidiary. The process has so far been dogged by planning problems at the proposed site as well as organised local opposition, which does not want a new industrial plant in the neighbourhood and issues such as the increased traffic it would bring. The irony here is that Ecocem bills itself as an environmentally friendly cement producer. Yet even environmentally-friendly cement needs to be manufactured and taken to site.
To misquote Kermit the Frog: it’s not easy selling green cement. However, Ecocem’s progress in Europe is encouraging both in the UK and the wider area. Roll on the opening of the Sheerness terminal.
Find out more about Ecocem's operations here: www.ecocem.fr/en/