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1. The limestone is combined with clay, ground in a crusher and fed into the additive silos. Sand, iron and bottom ash are then combined with the limestone and clay in a carefully controlled mixture which is ground into a fine powder in a 2000 hp roller mill.
2. Next, the fine powder is heated as it passes through the Pre-Heater Tower into a large kiln, which is over half the length of a football field and 4.2 meters in diameter. In the kiln, the powder is heated to 1500 degrees Celsius. This creates a new product, called clinker, which resembles pellets about the size of marbles.
3. The clinker is combined with small amounts of gypsum production process, limestone and finely ground in a finishing mill. The mill is a large revolving cylinder containing 250 tonnes of steel balls that is driven by a 4000 hp motor. The finished cement is ground so fine that it can pass through a sieve that will hold water.
4. The dry cement process consists of many simultaneous and continuous operations using some of the largest moving machinery in manufacturing. Over 5000 sensors and 50 computers allow the entire operation to be controlled by a single operator from a central control room.
Cement plant is usually located closely either to hot spots in the market or to areas with sufficient quantities of raw materials. The aim is to keep transportation costs low. Basic constituents for cement (limestone and clay) are taken from quarries in these areas.
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