In an interview with our VP Ceramics, Rodrigo González, we talked about the IMPS system, its applications and benefits in industrial kiln combustion processes. Learn more about this solution and the advantages it offers your own operation.
What is the IMPS pulsing system?
What are the benefits of IMPS?
Why is it necessary to have a pulsing system?
How does IMPS help in getting better process control?
What are the component parts of the IMPS system?
This particular solution is based on pulsing system technology dating back to the 1970s. Over a period of 20+ years Nutec Bickley has developed new control algorithms and hardware to make this technology more efficient.
IMPS (integrated multizone pulsing system) is a combustion system comprising hardware and software whose purpose is to achieve the best possible temperature uniformity allied to lower fuel consumption.
The integrated multi-zone pulsing system allows our customers to use 25% less fuel than with standard technology.
This fuel saving is possible when controlling the variables that affect the heating curve inside the industrial ceramic kiln, such as:
1. Heating rate
2. Gas-to-air ratio
3. Internal pressure
Other benefits of this technology for your operation are as follows:
- It links all the kiln’s control zones, monitors the way in which they affect one another, and automatically regulates them.
- Temperature variations remain within ±5°C so this is an extremely reliable system.
- Excellent finished product quality due to more uniform firing.
- Reduced manufacturing costs thanks to lower fuel consumption.
- It provides a high level of operational flexibility, as a result of the different firing modes.
- It enables shorter processes, allowing you to complete more cycles per year and therefore increase your total output.
- Works hand in hand with our heat recovery systems to deliver greater savings in fuel consumption.
- Ideal for sanitaryware, refractories, technical ceramics, continuous casting refractories, electro porcelain, electronic ceramics, heavy clayware, abrasives, etc.
- Suitable also for steel and alloy in heat treating kilns and processes.
Without this type of system you need to use high levels of excess air in order to maintain temperature uniformity and this entails additional cost as this air also needs to be heated.
Temperature uniformity is an overriding factor in achieving consistent product quality and to get it you need a system that is geared to constantly monitor temperature.
IMPS facilitates excellent control along all segments of the firing curve, as across the firing modes it is possible to change the behaviour of the kiln in order to adapt to the specific requirements of each process.
Firing modes – two main types
1. Heating modes: Steaming, Partial excess air firing, On-ratio firing.
2. Cooling modes: Normal cooling, Slow cooling, Max cooling.
Heating modes allow us to control the curve from as low as 90°C, making it possible to vary the gas-to-air ratio according to process demands. This in turn allows us to operate with a stoichiometric mixture in order to achieve the optimum fuel efficiency.
Cooling modes allow us to vary the quantity of air injected into the kiln, making it possible to have faster cooling rates in the zones that need it and, on the other hand, to switch to slower cooling rates in the quartz inversion zones.
The ‘Max Cooling’ mode is slightly different, and allows us to make our kilns more productive by reducing the cycle time while speeding up cooling once the temperature of the product falls below 400°C.
With this mode, in addition to introducing air through the burners we use nozzles to inject additional air. To achieve this, we have a secondary air loop that comes into play when the quantity of air being introduced by the burners is insufficient.
Our kilns are fitted with a combustion and control system comprising burners, valves and fans.
Apart from the physical components, we have a PLC that serves as an operating system and that is set up to automatically control the process variables.
We have developed burners, valves and fans that allow IMPS to be in continuous operation. Additionally, we work constantly on improvements to the associated software to ensure the system delivers the highest possible processing quality.
At Nutec Bickley we have great expertise in developing solutions for the ceramic industry, providing custom designed kilns for all needs and for specialized applications. Get in touch with our qualified advisory team to learn more about IMPS, our heat recovery systems etc.