Keramika Burgas AD, is an important and fast growing brick producer in the Balkans who assigned to SABO S.A. during the spring of 2020, the construction of a new tunnel kiln, a robotic setting line, and a robotic unsetting and packaging line.
The main purpose of the project was to install a modern kiln able to deliver high quality bricks and blocks together with the necessary kiln car setting line, palletizing on wooden pallets and packaging with a stretch hood.
This project was the second phase of a phased investment that was decided back in 2018 between SABO and Keramika Burgas. The first phase involved the cutting line - using an electronic cutter - and a new tunnel dryer which SΑΒΟ installed successfully for Keramika Burgas in 2018.
The factory is designed to produce all range of bricks used in Bulgarian market 120x250x250, 1NF, 1,8NF plus high insulating blocks 362x246x238, 500x116x238.
The project was completed in less than 10 months. This completion time that includes the start-up is quite an achievement if ones consider the various restrictions due to COVID-19 pandemic.
After the dry material is unloaded from the metal pallets, by a robot, it is directed towards the programming bench. The whole design ensures high capacity and efficiency through a simple layout that takes into account the available space. Many different setting patterns have been made available according to product perforation, dimension, volume, and weight. According to the required firing conditions of each product, there is a variety of programs matching space and setting that are very important for the correct firing. One robot is performing the final accurate stacking on the kiln cars.
The kiln has been designed after careful analysis of the properties of the available raw material by the SABO clay lab, the capacity requirements and the requested versatile product range.
One of the main requirements of the project was to complete the project in the shortest possible time something that will allow the customer to market the new products the soonest possible. Since kiln construction is a time-consuming process the engineering efforts were concentrated to the kiln-building part of the project
Together with the well-known company Refratechnik, the kiln was implemented with walls made from special large refractories pieces. This gave a big advantage to finish the building of kiln in the half time than the one normally needed to build the kiln with the traditional method which uses normal refractories bricks for the wall.
The firing process between 150 °C and 400 °C at the preheating zone is designed with a strong recirculation system that creates the proper preheating conditions in an efficient way.
Utilizing solid fuel with favorable cost was also an important requirement of the project. To do this, a group of 8 pellet burners was installed and competes the firing procedure creating a smooth and proper firing curve. The whole process and implementation takes into consideration strong exothermic reactions at 750oC- 800 oC.
The entire kiln is equipped with automatic measuring and controlling equipment, an advanced proprietary SCADA system that has been developed by SABO through many years of experience. A central computer system monitors and adjusts the total firing process through the various subsystems of the kiln and according to the data acquired by all the kiln sensors, the main preset parameters, and the optimal firing curve of the clay mixture. Safety functions are integrated in the system together with all necessary alarm signal recordings. There is the possibility to remote control even from a smart phones and get important reporting as well.
The new kiln has a low energy consumption and less than 1% total scrap of process.
Unsetting Line - Packaging
After the firing process, bricks are dehacked by a robot layer by layer and fed to the packaging line. Quality control and selecting procedures can be applied at this stage if required. Another robot makes the final packs to the requested dimensions (1000x1200mm) on the wooden pallet. Also, the line has the capacity to produce packets of dimensions 1000x1000mm. Final packs are horizontally strapped with pet strap and stretch hood through a new hooding machine.