SKF helps manufacturer extend service life for vertical roller mills

The challenge

A vertical roller mill manufacturer in China is helping the Chinese cement industry transition to the use of vertical roller mills for clinker grinding. What's behind the switch? Energy efficiency, primarily - statistics show that vertical roller mills can cut electricity consumption by more than 30% over traditional ball mills. Vertical roller mills also occupy less floor space than ball mills.

Despite their advantages, vertical roller mills are especially prone to premature bearing failures due to dust contamination. On average, cement mills have to change these bearings every eight months to avoid failures, even though the calculated bearing life is much longer. Looking for ways to extend mill service life, the manufacturer looked to SKF.

The SKF solution

SKF consultants suggested that the manufacturer install a new SKF sealing solution featuring an auxiliary PTFE excluder lip. Providing extra protection against dust and other contaminants, this SKF sealing solution had been proven to extend bearing service life in the grinding wheels of vertical roller mills up to 24 months.

The results

The manufacturer adopted this solution in one of its clinker grinding machines that was put into pilot use in late January 2009. As of March 2010, the company reported that the mill continues to operate trouble-free, with no unplanned stoppages since installation.
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