Given the disproportionate rise in energy costs in recent months, Tyrolit has responded in a number of ways to reduce costs as far as possible. The Engineering department increased efficiency in production by significantly reducing the consumption of the gas-fired tunnel kiln.
The impact was felt immediately as the production of our vitrified bonded grinding wheels in Plant 1 is highly energy-intensive. The energy reduction was achieved by installing a heat exchanger that heats the supply air of the burners with the waste gas from the cooling zone of the tunnel kiln. The waste gas at 170°C then heats the supply air, which raises the room temperature to just over 100°C. This also made it possible to optimise the setting parameters with regard to gas consumption. In order to be able to use the remaining waste gas from the cooling zone, a line was laid to a drying chamber. It is now largely heated directly with the waste gas.
In addition to the tunnel kiln, the shuttle kilns were optimised and connected to the central heat recovery network via the new Kiln Hall 4. In this central heat recovery system, thermal oil and hot water are heated with waste gas. As a result of these measures, the amount of energy used in the furnaces that can be recovered and reused has increased from 15% to 28%.
But it is not only in Plant 1 that the furnaces are now operated more efficiently – the electrical energy requirements of many curing ovens have also been reduced in Plants 2 and 3. By reducing the air volume via fan control, the electrical energy requirements of the ovens were reduced by approx. 24%.
The reduced gas consumption not only lowered the overall increase in energy costs, but also protects the environment and takes a further step towards sustainable management. CO2 emissions were reduced by 1,100 metric tonnes per year. As a comparison: In Austria, an average of 7.3 tonnes of CO2 are emitted per person per year.
The Engineering department would once again like to express its sincere thanks to all those involved for the excellent cooperation that made these projects possible.