For a century, the international Claudius Peters Group has been at the vanguard of materials handling and processing technology. It has maintained this position with the help of its regional divisions, specifically Claudius Peters (Americas) Inc. Dan Harvey reports how the Dallas, Texas-based division contributes to the big picture.
Claudius Peters has solidified its leadership position in the global cement industry. The Americas office is a subdivision of Claudius Peters Group GmbH, an international corporation headquartered in Buxtehude (near Hamburg) that has 100-years of operation and more than 50-year in the cement industry. Claudius Peters Group GmbH is a wholly owned subsidiary of Langley Holdings plc, a privately controlled UK engineering group.
More specifically, Claudius Peters Americas, which includes 35 employees at its Dallas headquarters, is part of the Technologies Division, that supports Claudius Peters Technologies GmbH (Germany) and Claudius Peters Technologies S.A. (France). Each location focuses on technologies in the field of materials handling and processing, primarily for the cement industry but for other industries as well, informs Ron Parks, president of Claudius Peters Americas. “The cement industry is a big part of our business, but similar materials handling and processing technology is utilized in the gypsum, coal, aluminum, power and certain specialty industries,” he says.
Positioned to Serve Region
In 2006, Claudius Peters Americas celebrated its 30th anniversary. The division was established in 1976 in Milwaukee, Wis., to handle the growing demand in the Americas market. “The concept was that the international company needed a local division to support the German corporate office and handle the increasing amount of business developing in the Americas region,” says Parks.
Another major factor driving the various divisions’ creation is Claudius Peters Group’s requirement to offer local project management support along with aftermarket parts and service. In this way, the corporation can maintain close personal contact at all business levels that, in turn, fosters long-term partnerships. Moreover, the established network of key regional subsidiaries enables the company to respond more effectively and efficiently to clients’ requirements.
In 1978, the America’s division moved to its current location. “The Dallas office has responsibilities, both technically and commercially, for all countries in the Americas, except for Brazil, and Dallas is a pivotal location for many reasons including a first class international airport” says Parks.
Brazil has its own Claudius Peters office, located in Sao Paulo. Other regional sites that enable the company to serve a global marketplace include Claudius Peters (Italiana) Ltd. (Bergamo), Claudius Peters (UK) Ltd. (Reading), Claudius Peters (Iberica) S.A. (Madrid), Claudius Peters (India) Pvt. Ltd (Mumbai), Claudius Peters (China) Ltd. (Beijing), Claudius Peters (China) Ltd. (Hong Kong), Claudius Peters (Asia Pacific) Pte. Ltd. (Singapore) and Claudius Peters Romania S.R. L. (Sibiu). All of these locations including France and Dallas report back to the parent office in Germany which is managed by Mr. JeanPierre Mereau.
Parks reports increased business development and activity in China that is impacting other CP divisions, including CP Americas. “The biggest trend right now is the dramatic growth in the cement market. A major contributor to this fact is the Chinese market absorbing a large portion of the exported cement from around the world that use to be imported into the US market,” he explains. “We are assisting our US clients with the development of new facilities in North America for internal consumption and other clients outside of NA which will use the product for export.”
Claudius Peters Americas provides materials handling and process technologies both on a design/supply basis and turnkey. The division also works with customers from development to installation, providing engineering expertise and project management. They offer the most advanced technology designed to service the cement industry, as well as customers in other industries.
For instance, Claudius Peters provides pneumatic conveying systems to transport dry materials in high capacities substantial distances. Another area of expertise is the design of silos for storage and product loading into trucks and rail cars.
Perhaps the most compelling technology for the cement industry involves clinker handling and cooling, which is one of the key elements in the pyroprocessing line. Claudius Peters has become recognized as a leader in clinker cooling. They commissioned the first of its reciprocating grate clinker coolers in 1951. Since that time, more than 600 CP clinker coolers have been installed around the world, according to the company. Its clinker cooler represents technology in a continual state of development, as the capacity, availability and efficiency of the cement making process has steadily increased since the 50s. At that time, the company’s typical clinker cooler had a 500-ton-per-day capacity. Today, the company has several cooler systems in operation that can handle up to 12,000 tons a day.
“We have a new clinker cooler that utilizes the ‘walking floor’ principle,” informs Parks. “It has eliminated the majority of the cooler’s internal components that are problematic, yet it still cools the clinker and recovers the heat to the client’s requirements. The most intriguing fact is that the unit is relatively simple, requires minimal maintenance and operates with the highest level of reliability. In the three years that it has been available to the market, the industry has accepted and procured this unit at an incredible pace.”
Another well accepted CP design, the “EM” ball ring mill, is one of the simplest and most reliable methods available for grinding materials. For the gypsum market, the EM-mill provides grinding and calcining capabilities in a single unit.
The transport air is introduced into the mill at high enough temperatures to calcine the gypsum while entrained in the air stream. This application has become an industry standard for certain gypsum type processes. Sometimes a separate calcining operation is required (e.g., high-temperature applications with critical resonance times).
The Claudius Peters Group develops its new technologies and improves on its existing designs at its test center located at its corporate headquarters in Germany.
“It’s a complete test center that can simulate the client’s application, whether it involves materials handling, pneumatic conveying, grinding or calcining,” says Parks.
The trial and testing facilities fully evaluates new application before it’s allowed to move on to a full-scale system. The test program includes application problems, engineering data, risk analysis and quality controls.
In addition, CP provides courses and training seminars for technical staff and plant managers at both the client’s plant and the technical center. Therefore, the center has gained a reputation as one of the most comprehensive facilities of its kind.
Committed to Service
Besides the technology and the testing it provides for clients, Claudius Peters Americas goes out of its way to help satisfy a customer’s specific technological needs. “A large part of our business is the supply of new equipment and providing the necessary spare parts for the operation,” says Parks. “However, we also do a lot of modifications of existing operations such as silos, coolers and material handling systems. This has become a big part of our business.
This comprehensiveness indicates the division’s commitment to service. It places high priority and premium on this element, according to Parks. “It is our goal to provide the highest quality engineered systems along with the necessary expert support and service – for life,” he emphasizes.
Claudius Peters Americas, as with all divisions in the Claudius Peters Group, fully comprehends just how important its equipment is to a customer’s business operations. As such, it offers comprehensive facilities management services that cover the equipment in its start-up and hand-over phases and, moreover, all throughout its operation. The company offers an optimum maintenance regime that’s good for the life of the plant. The regime is supported by complete spare parts availability that can be accessed directly from the regional offices. In this way, the company points out, customers are better able to concentrate on running their own core businesses and not worry about the necessary support.
Superior equipment, innovative technology, and optimal service – these are the hallmarks that have cemented Claudius Peters’ reputation as a world leader in materials handling and processing in the industrial sector.