Brazil is the second largest producer and consumer – and fourth largest exporter – of ceramic tiles in the world. Natural gas is the main source of energy for kilns in this industry, and also one of the items that have the largest share of the cost of the finished product.
A ceramic tile company located in São Paulo was in the process of modernizing its main kiln. The company intended to deactivate two smaller kilns and reduce its gas consumption, whose bill was close to U$ 100,000 per month. Upgraded, the larger kiln should be able to meet all the company production requirements and to controlling 38 heating meshes. The gas feed in the larger kiln burners was controlled by obsolete equipment that needed to be upgraded.
How to solve it?
The N2000, a PID controller designed explicitly for the actuation of servomotor valves, has emerged as the ideal solution to the problem. Also a device was required to connect the controllers with the supervisory software. The chosen device for this purpose was DigiGate, which acts as a gateway for connection between a Profibus network and a Modbus RTU network. DigiGate’s choice enabled N2000 controllers to communicate with a data acquisition and monitoring system via the PROFIBUS-DP protocol, indicating the operating status of each controller, as well as recording application information on a data server.
By upgrading the main kiln, it became possible for the company to manufacture more than one type of ceramic tile on the same line, lowering production costs. The reduction in gas consumption has also fallen by half after deactivating the two smaller kilns. Our sales consultant involved in the negotiation with the tile company Gabriel Dallacqua points out that reforming processes is a business need, especially during a crisis. He explains that companies opt for system integrators who transmit confidence and security, in addition to offering quality solutions. All these characteristics, plus the offer of exclusive products for the segment, were the differentials that made the company adopt the solution and achieve the modernization of its main kiln and consequently money savings.