Maintenance & Service From simple Maintenance to on-site Placement of Service Personnel
Machine malfunctions and breakdowns can cause long downtimes, especially in intralogistics, causing production and delivery to come to a complete halt. High-quality systems can help prevent such costly consequences beforehand, but they still require maintenance and service. This is where the customer support experts come in.
African company Dangote, based in Lagos, Nigeria has two ambitious goals - to compete with the leading cement manufacturers world-wide and prepare for an upcoming construction boom. Africa is an emerging continent, where the demand for cement is steadily increasing due to the continuously growing population and the need for infrastructure development. Dangote has been using Beumer systems such as loading systems, belt conveyors and bucket elevators for years. Systems from third-party suppliers are also used. “When it came to a belt misalignment on a bucket elevator used for feeding silos with a height of more than 60 m, we repeatedly had to endure production downtimes”, explains Kornelius Thimm, head of Customer Support for Beumer in Beckum, Germany. This is a typical problem, according to Thimm. The system had to be stopped repeatedly for the workers to correct the error. In the long run, however, this needed to be corrected.
The cement manufacturer had made various service agreements with Beumer Customer Support. “On principle, our agreements are specially designed to meet the individual requirements of the customer”, explains Thimm. In order for them to be optimally tailored to meet the customer's needs, a Beumer service technician evaluated all of Dangote's on-site systems. The agreements can range from only maintenance and inspection to a long-term placement of service personnel on site. Beumer Belt Management, for example, helps to avoid downtime through regular inspections and timely replacement of bucket elevator belts. The Residential Service comprises technical support, preventive maintenance and inspection, emergency plans, system and process analyses and optimisation as well as spare parts and facility management.
Modernisation that Pays Off Quickly
Beumer specialists work together with the customer to find a sustainable solution. “Our goal is to further improve trouble-free intralogistic processes in order to guarantee value-added material flow”, explains Thimm. In this case, the modernisation of the plant was recommended. “We didn't just want to repair the errors, but actively support the company to meet upcoming capacity and technology requirements”, says Thimm. After an in-depth consultation with Beumer specialists, the belt and the buckets were replaced with the latest heavy-duty technology developed from Beumer. This solution offers buckets that are mounted firmly to the back of the belt by segments and bolts. Belts with wire-free zones are used for the heavy-duty bucket elevators just as with all Beumer belt bucket elevators. The buckets can be fastened to the belt without damaging the steel wires or even cutting them. The traction forces of the bucket elevator belt are maintained to the full extent. The new bucket shape also allows for smoother running and therefore less noise generation. Furthermore, the return pulleys were replaced. “The new conveyor belts are more resistant against mechanical wear, and they can transport coarse-grained material and high mass flows. All this makes the new heavy-duty bucket elevator the preferred product for this customer”, explains Thimm. This solution helps the cement manufacturer to increase the availability of the bucket elevator, reduce energy consumption and extend service life and makes the company more competitive in the long term, as opposed to the replacement of only one belt. “If we assume that the new Beumer solution lasts twice as long as the old belt, the modification would have paid off after a short period of time”, confirms Thimm.