Jan 08, 2024
Assess Your Plant Site for Efficiency
A common theme when any OEM or consultant visits the plant to advise on upgrades or fixes is how to get the plant to operate more efficiently. Even if you don’t plan to buy new equipment after a consultant’s visit, you want to know what you can do to make current equipment more efficient.
Start with location. Depending on where you are, you’ll have more or less interest in different tools available in the marketplace. A plant in Florida, for example, will have high moisture content to deal with. That plant owner may take a look at his burner, but he should start at his stockpiles. Start with a site plan that will give the burner and dryer the best shot at running efficiently. Pave under the stockpiles and do so on an incline so water drains away from the plant. Gravity is your friend for more than water collection, and you should assess how to use it to reduce pumping and conveying energy costs as well.
Stay with location. What’s the expected tonnage of the plant for your marketplace? If you’ll need to run at 300 tons per hour (TPH) 90 to 95% of the time, you better have a plant that can meet that demand. If you only need to meet a production level of 150 TPH, it’s not efficient to have equipment sized for the higher rating. Any OEM will tell you plants run at peak performance when running near their top capacity.
Change the location. Not all plant owners have the flexibility of packing and moving the plant 200 miles up the road. Portable plants obviously make this an easier achievement than purchasing and permitting a new plant. One advantage of moving the plant is cutting down haul distances for the new or larger radius of projects you can bid. If you should have the ability to move a plant, remember how this toolbox tip started: assess the site for efficiency. You can “build in” a way to reduce material movement costs and material drying costs and so much more if you start by planning out the site.
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