CI tools increase yield for chemical production plant while retaining current cycle time and quality

Executive summary

A chemical production plant realised 8% in increased production yield of a key derivative and $40 000 in annual savings by applying CI tools and methodology.

  • Annual savings of $40 000
  • 8% increase in throughput while maintaining current batch cycle time
  • 8% increase in production yield of a key derivative
  • An old, inefficient making system was shut down and removed from service at a chemical manufacturer’s production plant
  • The existing system, which was operating at 95% utilisation, required a capacity increase to retain the same yield level
  • The challenge was to transfer the production throughput from the retired system to the existing system while maintaining current batch cycle times
  • The formulation also had to be optimised without compromising quality, which meant the ratio of reacting to grinding would be critical
  • Applying continuous improvement tools and methodology, the project team increased the batch size of the existing system by increasing the rate of raw material addition
  • The team then reduced the overall mixing time, while increasing the milling rate and reducing the washing rate on the grinder
  • In addition, the team was able to process more product through the grinder at the same rate, without any process upsets or adverse effects on product quality