Picture this: The sun is scorching in Southeast Asia where G Leonard Ltd is on-site to begin the descaling process of Republic Cement Group’s refractory. The hot and sticky air pales in comparison to the temperature inside the preheater tower, which traditionally requires workers to clean out the coating inside using handheld tools. An arduous, laborious task that is both incredibly tricky and time-consuming.
With over 40 years of experience, Brokk robots provide fast, efficient and above all, safe solutions to customers wanting to reduce shutdown time and increase productivity. The Brokk Descaler being one of several robots used to perform such demolition solutions.
Using a remote-controlled Brokk robot to clean out rotary kilns in cement plants has been common practice for decades, but using a Brokk Descaler offers a unique solution as the robot can perform the work vertically using a revolutionary telescopic boom that reaches new heights. The Brokk Descaler comes in a single and a twin version that allows for descaling in various parts of the preheater tower such as cyclones, calciners and goosenecks measuring up to 9.5 meters in diameter. G Leonard Ltd chose the twin version to remove the built-up coating accumulated during the production process.
It might not come as a surprise that no two preheater towers look the same since build-up often appears in different areas of these vessels, making a flexible demolition solution essential. That’s where the Brokk Descaler comes into play. Carefully designed to be used in multiple applications within the cement industry, the robot can be easily moved to any location in the preheater tower and can be transported in lifts with just as much ease.
Installation of the Brokk Descaler can be completed in approximately three hours and once installed, the operator can safely view the operation from outside the cyclone through hatches, allowing for safe and controlled demolition. All subsequent installations will take between 1-2 hours and no additional manpower or resources are needed, unlike conventional descaling methods which typically require production to be halted.
In addition to hundreds of tons of overhead refractory being removed without any physical contact, and at a much faster pace than doing the same task manually, the Brokk Descaler also eliminates the risk of danger for personnel working in the preheater tower. The remote-controlled robot requires a single operator to stand at a safe distance, minimizing exposure while simultaneously allowing the operator to choose the best position to oversee the job. ‘’No one had to access the inside of the vessel to clean or demolish the refractory lining,’’ says Mark Leonard, Director of G Leonard Ltd. Using the Brokk Descaler improves production capacity by reducing shutdown time and performs the descaling at a much faster rate. ‘’Working life made easier and safer,’’ says Leonard.
Expertly engineered to avoid hazardous descaling in preheater towers within the cement industry, the remote-controlled nature of the Brokk Descaler allows for precisive maneuvering which leads to better operator safety. By using a remote-controlled robot, the operator minimizes exposure to dust, vibrations as well as falling debris. Working safely is also a widespread concern. Conventional descaling methods often require manual pre-inspection work using handheld tools, a risky and time-consuming task. The Brokk Descaler facilitates a quick installation, faster demolition, and a significant reduction in shutdown time since workers aren’t required to go inside the cyclone and work can commence already at 80°C.
Traditionally, working in confined spaces in the preheater tower puts workers at risk, regardless of the precaution measures in place. Risk of falling debris can occur despite the safety nets and safety regulations at the cement plant. ‘’We want to remove people from the direct and indirect line of fire. No matter what country, everyone deserves the right to work in a safe environment,’’ says Mark Leonard when asked what the deciding factors were in choosing a Brokk robot for the job. The Brokk Descaler places the operator outside the cyclone and in turn, the risks have either been eliminated or significantly reduced.
The Brokk Descaler is a carefully designed solution for removing refractory, coating, and build-up in different areas in preheater towers at cement plants. With a telescopic arm for outstanding reach and remote-controlled maneuvering, the Brokk Descaler revolutionizes conventionally hazardous descaling methods in the cement industry. With heat-resistant accessories as well as well-protected cylinders and components, the Brokk Descaler makes the risk of breakdown due to heat a thing of the past! THE BROKK DESCALER can operate at 360˚, making it the proactive demolition solution for cement plants around the world.
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// The Brokk team