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JRC cements progress on Mozambique plant reliability

First publishedin Aggregates Business International
MayJune2019
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With help from Metso, JRC has reached its goal to improve reliability at Pedreira de Salamanga cement plant in Mozambique
With help from Metso, JRC has reached its goal to improve reliability at Pedreira de Salamanga cement plant in Mozambique, east Africa. Guy Woodford reports


Metso Minerals Portugal signed an agreement with JRC, Construções e Obras publicas, S.A. in 2014 to provide an automated primary crushing and screening plant to feed a cement plant located in Mozambique. The main objectives of this project were to reduce the cement plant’s operating costs, maximise throughput by improving the feed capacity, increase the stock capacity and lower the environmental impacts associated with the cement plant’s operations.

Located in Salamanga, 90km from Maputo, Mozambique’s capital city, JRC is a contractor for Cimentos de Moçambique, part of Brazilian private equity company InterCement, a major cement producer with operations in South America, Africa and Europe.

The Salamanga Quarry operation, which went into production in 1955, supplies all the limestone for Cimentos de Moçambique. The old primary crushing stage, located in the factory in Matola, had several major problems that were causing interruptions in uptime.

It also faced another challenge. The operating model was designed to transport 0/600mm rocks by train from the quarry to the cement plant. This resulted in high operating and transport costs, as well as significant potential for safety risks.  

“Loading the 600mm into the train caused a lot of unused space between the rocks; this not only prevented JRC from loading the tons to the maximum capacity, it also increased the safety risk due to the size of the rocks,” says Paulo Seiça Leitao, Metso sales manager.

When Metso was called in 2012 to consult on the equipment, the company also recommended a new model for operations: do the crushing first in the quarry and then transport the smaller rocks to the cement plant.

From planning to action

Once the signature was in place, Metso pulled out all the stops to get the project going. It took only four months for the equipment to arrive from Portugal to Mozambique. Plant assembly began at the beginning of January 2015, with full commissioning completed in record time of just over two months. Start-up took place on 9 March 2015.

Metso installed a new crushing plant with its state-of-the-art equipment, including an apron feeder, a scalping screen VG645–3V, an impact crusher Nordberg NP1415 and a screen Compact CVB 2050–1P.

Customer feedback has been highly positive, and with Metso’s support they continue to achieve their production targets with improved reliability and reduced commercial risks.

“The new crushing plant with Metso equipment has enabled us to increase our production output and reduce our operating costs. This can be attributed to increased reliability of the operation and automation, which now has a constant feed. In addition to this, we have also seen significant improvements in the plant’s environmental impacts,” says Marisa Conceição, JRC general manager.

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JRC is now able to increase Salamanga's quarry production capacity to about 1 million tonnes annually, maximising throughput

Environment and safety a key factor in the upgrade

Relocating the JRC crushing system from the plant to the quarry was successful also from the point of view of the environment, as it reduced the mineral processing dust and noise in the areas around the cement plant.

“This was one of the great added benefits that Metso provided. Moving the crushing system from the plant to the quarry lowered the risk of pollution, noise and dust. This sustainable environmental solution will help us to obtain and ensure compliance with our environmental permit and will drive JRC to be at the forefront of transformation in the cement industry,” notes Marisa Conceição.  

The crushing plant that Metso installed was equipped with several devices to minimize pollutant emissions and environmental impacts, mainly dust. Additionally, the plant was designed with key safety control features, as well as smart devices to help separate the workers from the machines during operation.

The new crushing plant with Metso’s equipment was developed to reduce the rock size from 0/600mm to 0/60mm. “Crushing the rocks from 600mm to 60mm reduced the safety risks and increased the cement plant’s feed reliability and production for Cimentos da Matola,” explains Leitao.

Delivering results

Metso’s knowledge in carrying out the design and manufacture and installation of the crushing plant for this specific application and working with this type of limestone was extensive.  

“The customer is very satisfied because we delivered on our promise. We met an output of 600 tonnes an hour. The customer’s production output is now averaging 650 tonnes an hour, and therefore yielding a lower cost per tonne,” concludes Paulo.  

Metso has established a strong relationship with JRC and has also supplied it with another plant to crush hard rock at a construction aggregates facility in Moamba, Mozambique. The customer rates Metso as knowledgeable, accurate, honest, friendly and a world-class company.

The bottom line is that JRC is now able to increase the quarry’s production capacity to about one million tonnes annually, maximizing throughput.

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