Published by Sol Klappholz, Assistant Editor
Today, Heidelberg Materials celebrated the opening of its new cement plant in Mitchell, Indiana. The state-of-the-art facility will be the second largest cement plant in North America and one of the most technologically advanced and sustainable ever built.
Heidelberg Materials management from around the world joined federal, state and local leaders to officially cut the ribbon on the historic investment in Lawrence County.
“Our Mitchell project instills pride in our rich history and provides an exciting look into the future of cement production at the same time,” said Heidelberg Materials CEO Dr. Dominik von Achten. “The plant will substantially contribute to Heidelberg Materials’ offering of low-carbon cement and concrete – it is the springboard to becoming the first fully decarbonised cement plant in the U.S. It represents our commitment to further strengthening our North American footprint and increasing the sustainability of our products.”
“Heidelberg Materials’ investment is indicative of great things to come for the state of Indiana and demonstrates the caliber of investments our state continues to attract,” said Governor Eric. J. Holcomb. “Heidelberg Materials’ world-class advanced technology and globally recognised sustainable practices are a perfect fit as we look to attract more companies that will help us build out our future-focused economy. I couldn’t be more grateful for their confidence in our Hoosier workforce and their commitment to growing together.”
The new Mitchell plant is comprised of advanced technology and design features to meet ambitious production and capacity goals. A new automated lab, a smart motor control center to collect and communicate data, and a high-speed automated rotary-type packing machine capable of filling 3600 full-sized (94-pound) bags per hour will dramatically increase efficiency.
The Mitchell plant will be capable of producing more than 2.4 million t of cement a year and is expected to help address U.S. cement supply chain constraints. It opens on the heels of the 2021 passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. This federal legislation, among other things, provides historically high levels of funding for surface transportation needs, including US$110 billion to repair roads, bridges and support major infrastructure projects.
A noticeable feature of the site is the 219-ft-wide, 164-ft-high storage dome, which can hold 154,000 tons of clinker, the intermediate material produced in the manufacture of Portland cement. The structure was built with Heidelberg Materials’ EcoCem PLC TM the company’s lower-carbon Portland Limestone Cement, and is the largest dome constructed of this product in North America.
With the increased capacity and commitment to efficient delivery, Heidelberg Materials is improving the facility’s distribution process. The company will be bringing on an additional 1000 rail cars to serve the newly renovated rail yard near the site. The new distribution terminal accommodates 32 000 t of additional cement storage.
“The plant will reduce clinker production carbon dioxide emissions per ton of product by almost 30% mainly through operating on natural gas,” said Chris Ward, President and CEO of Heidelberg Materials North America. “Our investment in the Mitchell facility helps us lower our carbon footprint while serving the growing demand for more sustainable products in this key market.”
The new facility will primarily produce EcoCemTM PLC, the company’s durable cement produced with a significantly smaller carbon footprint. Additionally, Heidelberg Materials is leveraging funding from the U.S. Department of Energy at the site to study the feasibility of carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) at the site.
“There is a great sense of pride among the workers here and the community,” said Tracy Crowther, Mitchell Plant Manager. “The innovations in the plant are a nod to the legacy of generations of people who have worked in this industry here in Indiana.”
The new Mitchell plant is adding more than 50 full-time jobs to the 120 already employed at the site. Construction began in 2019, and more than 1000 construction jobs were created as a result of the project. Despite delays from the global Covid-19 pandemic, the project was completed on schedule.
For more information, please visit the project page here.
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/the-americas/14062023/heidelberg-materials-celebrates-opening-of-new-state-of-the-art-cement-plant-with-significantly-reduced-co2-emissions-in-mitchell-indiana/
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