Caleras de San Cucao, S.A.
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The Calcination Process

The production of the lime consists on the calcination of the limestone, to a temperature above 900º C. The calcium carbonate breaks down by the heat according to the following equation:

Reacción de descomposición del Carbonato Cálcico mediante el calor.

Representación esquemática del desarrollo de la reacción de descomposición del CaCO3

The reaction of dissociation of the limestone is characterized by the fact that it takes place in a front of decomposition (reaction area), in which the still non-dissociated nucleus of CaCO3 and the shell of CaO that has been formed are in contact. This front of dissociation moves from the periphery towards the center at a certain speed. Simultaneously there is a transfer of heat from the exterior towards the nucleus and a detachment of CO2 towards the exterior.

Nowadays, the calcination of limestone is carried out fundamentally in regenerative kilns with parallel current that, opposed to the counter-current classic ones, allow to preheat and to recover the combustion gases. They are ovens of double pot, in alternative operation. This technology allows an optimization of the energy consumption.

Hornos de calcinación de Caleras de San Cucao, S.A.

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