World Quality Day is an annual event held on the second Thursday of November to recognize the contributions of quality professionals across the globe. Various sources report that it was started by The Chartered Quality Institute (CQI), a global professional body advancing the practice of quality management in all sectors.
To help celebrate the day, we’ve gathered our top five blog articles about technology that helps ensure quality in the mining, minerals, cement, and coal industries:
- The iron and steel manufacturing process begins with mining raw materials, which must then be carefully processed to ensure quality finished products that meet specifications. The production of high-quality sinter is crucial for assuring consistent, stable furnace productivity with a low consumption of reductants. Sinter quality begins with the proper selection and mixing of the raw materials. Precise feeding of process materials is critical to maintaining product quality, but measuring and ensuring steel raw material quality control can be challenging. Read about the technology and equipment equipment used to ensure raw material quality control.
- Cement plants must monitor and analyze their raw material quality to ensure stable process operations, minimize production costs and meet product specification. Each plant is different, and each has unique challenges and requirements. In general, it is good to start by reviewing the use of an online analyzer to control the raw material quality within a pre-blending stockpile. When considering where to place an online analyzer, discuss key application parameters and process goals including stockpile blending, sorting, raw mix proportioning or any additional installation locations with the manufacturer’s representative or application specialist.
- Coal mining yields products of variable composition and quality. Variations in coal quality necessitates accurately sorting, separating, and blending the coal to meet customer specifications. With more consistent quality, mine personnel are able to meet their customers’ quality specifications, thus building on their reputation as a consistent, reliable supplier. On-line coal analyzers have been in use for more than two decades to help achieve proper sorting, and subsequent blending, of coal. It is important to understand the composition of coal prior to blending in order to maximize the blending process. Cross belt elemental analyzers and fixed geometry analyzers can be fully optimized with accompanying blending software that uses the analysis and calculations from the on-line system to sort the coal into the correct locations to be blended for various applications. With these tools, mines can improve recovery, increase direct ship coal, increase the use of lower quality coal through blending, and meet customers’ requirements for specific blends.
- Phosphorus is one of four plant macro-nutrients, along with nitrogen, potassium, and calcium. Because phosphorus plays a key role in photosynthesis, nutrient transport, and energy transfer, it is a very important ingredient in plant fertilizer. A plant with a phosphorus deficiency will exhibit stunted growth, lack of fruit or flowers, wilting, and leaves that may have a purple cast due to disruption of the photosynthetic process.There is a large variety of minerals which influence the content and availability of phosphorus in phosphate rocks. One standard technique to distinguish between the different mineral phases in the raw material is X-ray diffraction (XRD). With this method it is possible to quantify the content of different minerals according to their crystallographic structure.
- Clinker quality depends on raw material composition. If the raw materials are inappropriate, or if they are blended improperly, buildings and roads made from the concrete will have poor strength and durability. To improve upon the process and control system, a plant installed a Prompt Gamma Neutron Activation Analysis (PGNAA)-based crossbelt online elemental analyzer in conjunction with automatic raw material blending software after the corrective bins but before the raw mill. Being that PGNAA is an entirely penetrating analysis technology, the online analyzer provides minute-by-minute analysis results of the entire material stream, not just a surface analysis. With the new system in place, this company realized significant improvements in their quality process.
American engineer and quality expert W. Edwards Deming is quoted as saying: “It is not enough to do your best; you must know what to do, and then do your best.” Hopefully these articles can further your knowledge as to what to do, in order to produce the best quality products.
World Quality Day 2019: November 14 – Celebrate on twitter using: #WQD19