Using additives to lower the firing temperature in the heavy clay ceramic industry

At the request of the “Koninklijk Verbond van Nederlandse Baksteenfabrikanten” (KNB = Royal Association of Dutch Brick Manufacturers) and the SenterNovem technology agency, an investigation was conducted into the technical production aspects, the energy-related aspects and the economic aspects of adding additives to clay recipes for the purpose of lowering the firing temperature. The objective of doing so is to reduce the amount of energy consumed during the firing process.

1 Introduction

Energy-saving in relation to the production process in the ceramic industry is increasingly becoming a topic of discussion. In the first place, there is increasing political pressure to reduce the consumption of energy, in particular energy derived from fossil fuels. In the second place, the energy used for production is becoming an increasingly large cost item. Generally speaking, most of the energy used is needed to ensure evaporation of water from the products before they can be fired. In addition, a great deal of energy is also ­needed for firing the products in the kilns.


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