USA – Combining Energy Efficiency and Improved Product Quality
Our treatment facility in Sylacauga, Alabama turned production problems with a key product into an opportunity to improve both customer satisfaction and environmental performance.
Material and energy losses, together with complaints over the quality of Supercoat™ calcium carbonate, led the plant’s engineering team to overhaul the entire treatment process. Potential gains were identified by analyzing energy utilization data. First, energy use was reduced in each hot oil system by reducing variation and tweaking setpoint controls. Use of a key, temperature-setting chemical was also optimized. Finally, the end product was improved through greater consistency.
These improvements have permitted reductions in CO2 and hydrocarbon emissions while resulting in operational efficiency and providing better quality products to our clients.
Significant gains achieved by Sylacauga’s process overhaul are the result of cooperation both inside and outside the plant. The team included process, project and control engineers, technicians and operators, as well as technology from Marietta R&D center. Equipment suppliers took part in problem-solving meetings and a major customer agreed to evaluate the improved product. He had positive feedback.