Despite today’s slowing economic conditions, the recent passage of key federal highway bills and forward momentum in construction indicate that the cement and aggregate industry is holding strong and poised for growth. Whether it's Sprockets or Bucket Elevators, our years of experience in manufacturing products for the cement industry has exposed us to a wide range of applications and the stories to go with them.
Today we’re excited to look at the opportunities within this industry, share an inside view of how these efficient manufacturing operations produce tons of cement each year, and show real-life savings of an industry application.
Cement & Aggregate Industry Holding Strong
According to the Portland Cement Association (PCA), cement manufacturers will likely see a significant rise in cement consumption following the recent passage of a $305 billion federal transportation legislation, the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act.“FAST represents an average addition of 835 thousand tons annually to the cement industry,” said Edward J. Sullivan, PCA chief economist and group vice-president in a recent PCA press release.
Beyond the transportation bill, non-residential building and construction employment rates are improving in 2015, leading to growth in the production of crushed stone, sand, and gravel.
So How’s it All Made?
Concrete batch plants come in a variety of style and configurations designed to accommodate multiple markets with various technical and environmental considerations. We’ve included an interactive diagram below to show you the process.
The first step in cement production lies in the staging of raw material & storage. Essentially raw material is conveyed via screw feeders into Silos or Stock Piles for storage and then moved through a hopper that regulates the flow of material. Next, the material is often dried in a rotary kiln or sand dryer. However, this step may be omitted in some plants or in some seasons.
The material then begins the mixing & storage process. Aggregates (sand, gravel, or crushed stone), admixtures, fibers and sometimes water (for wet process) are properly proportioned and mixed together. Silos are found in the High-Profile plant. Raw material is dropped on a weigh conveyor for proper portioning, then delivered by conveyor to a loading truck. Low-Profile plants separate materials via a diverter and are processed in a shaker hopper, or mixer.
See it In Action – View an Interactive Cement Production Diagram Below
Real-World Case Study Example
A leading aggregate business experienced issues with production when a line went down due to an irreparable pulley. Standard lead time for replacing Quarry Duty Pulleys is a week, or even more from other pulley manufacturers.
Understanding the urgency and potential for lost business, Martin managed to produce a quality Quarry Duty Drum Conveyor Pulley in record time, shipping the very next day. The aggregate producer was able to replace the pulley and resumed production ahead of the expected schedule, saving $123,610.56 in downtime avoidance.
With years of experience serving the cement and aggregate industry, Martin has the industry-specific engineering and manufacturing expertise to provide the most reliable power transmission and material handling solutions. With unmatched levels of inventory and made-to-order manufacturing plants and 32 strategically placed locations throughout North America, Martin offers the fastest delivery time available on quality cement and aggregate solutions.