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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter August 31, 2021

Visualization of multiscale ring formation in a rotary kiln

  • Lee Rippon ORCID logo EMAIL logo , Barry Hirtz , Carl Sheehan , Travis Reinheimer , Philip Loewen and Bhushan Gopaluni


Rotary kilns are large-scale unit operations that are critical to many industrial processes such as cement production, pyrometallurgy, and kraft pulping. As expensive, energy-intensive units, it is imperative from both an economic and environmental perspective to ensure efficient operation of the rotary kiln. To provide additional insights for operation and maintenance, rotary kilns are increasingly outfitted with more advanced sensing technology. Leveraging this supplementary data requires strategies and active efforts towards storage, processing, and visualization. In this work we provide a visualization strategy for industrial thermal camera data that is measured along the shell profile of a rotary lime kiln. The proposed strategy assists specifically with the visualization of ring formation at different timescales, but it also serves more generally as a useful tool for operations management. This paper describes the visualization strategy, provides a demonstration with industrial data, and offers open-source resources for interested users to implement it themselves.

Funding statement: The authors thank Spartan Controls, the National Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada, and the Izaak Walton Killam Memorial Fund for funding this research.

  1. Conflict of interest: The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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Received: 2021-07-13
Accepted: 2021-08-15
Published Online: 2021-08-31
Published in Print: 2021-12-20

© 2021 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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