The different guises of quality
What does a cement plant want from a quarry? The simple answer is raw materials. But the quality of the materials supplied can be defined in a number of ways and there are some considerations which have an overriding influence on whether a material is acceptable or not. To examine what the quarry is expected to supply we shall take a look at who wants what.
Different aspects of the cement production process make specific demands on the plant’s quarry. Hence, the provision of high-quality raw materials will mean different things to different people. For instance, the quarry manager is looking for material that is easily extracted and transported while the plant chemist wants product with the correct composition. Easy-to-grind output meets the approval of the raw miller and the cement miller while the kiln operator needs raw materials that are easy to burn. The quality manager is looking for production that complies with standards and as the cement arrives in the market place, the customer values consistent properties.
Therefore, we can consider the requirements of a quarry by looking at the various functions that require input from the quarry.
The quarry manager
For the quarry manager ease of extraction will mean that the material itself is amenable to being blasted, ripped, dug or dredged with minimum manpower and wear on equipment. Moreover, the arrangement of the material in the quarry is such that removing and transporting the material required by the cement plant can be coordinated with working the quarry in an orderly manner.