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Technology Evaluations, Inc.
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Consulting  Services

Industrial Equipment & Process

Optimization & Process Modeling

TEI makes industrial processes work better using first principals and a hands on approach. Knowledge of a wide range of processes in diverse industries is the basic building block of our success, and examples of some innovative solutions are provided below.

PROBLEM SOLUTION
Energy to grind cement ingredient too expensive using traditional tech. Introduced resonate frequency milling tech from ceramic pigment industry
High cost and short life of lanolin de-silting hydroclones. Introduced low cost, mass produced equip developed for minerals industry 1/40 cost and 4X the life
85 deg angle of repose of powder combined with high cohesivity on standing, made removal from 7,000 ton silos problematic. Mechanical bearings were incompatible with powder. Powder currently mobilized by air pads to create fluidization. So the 100 HP air compressors had their output converted into a sine-wave using patented 75W device to effect a 100 HP subsonic vibration distributed throughout the powder. This arrangement used ½ the air, mobilized stagnant silo volume and increase transfer rates by 70%
Cleaning of storage tanks storage too costly. Several patent pending designs prepared.
Mining company wanted to trim ~10% of water consumption. Process modeling showed use of 400% more than needed, if existing water recycling system better deployed. Saved 1,000 Acre ft/Yr
Product needed more intrinsic value Added cheap outer cover which increased product performance and provided and surface from which to market corporate advertising. Result: Improved product potential and opened new markets.
QC of crystals size impeded because crystal and mother-liquor had same refractive index and color Used forensic technique of crossed polarized microscopy, to create bright crystals on black background. Providing a basis for QC/QA.
Chemist’s time spent 70% on graphing, interpolating and tabulating data Developed algorithms and computerized systems to increase output per chemist by 700%
Bulk crystalline-slurry shelf-life < 30 days, distribution needed at least three months. Determined controlled crystal growth to produce uniform geometry 3um crystal size resulted in 6mth life.
Water absorption in a deliquescent industrial chemical mixture in tropical environment could not be prevented from solidifying. Using a lower cost alternative component that contained lots of water, product was pre-combined selectively to produce a previously unknown non-deliquescent hydrate.
Aeration of ponds is energy intensive. Use math modeling to optimize airlift pump design which when combined with natural pond stratification of O2 levels; cut aeration costs by 80%. Patent pending
Highly labor intensive identification and correlation of patterns of business activity. Developed software to combine multiple databases; mapping technology and B&D information to both identify acquisition potentials and also to prioritize opportunities.
Manufacture of large centrifuges used costly steel rolling, welding, lathing and x-ray QA for internal components. Slight modification of internal geometry allows use of newly available large diameter seamless pipe. Dramatic cost reduction.
Manufacturer caught in price cutting war for industrial equipment. ABC analysis of separated business lines identified two disparate customer groups on a usage basis. One user group generated more income from bi-annual equipment overhauls than from original equipment sale. I recommended dramatic price reduction (sell at cost) to capture equip maintenance revenues. Result; their competitor failed to follow suit and finally withdrew from the market.
The second user group had no maintenance for at least 7 years. Recommended extending 2 Yr limited warranty to a 5yr comprehensive, which leap-frogged the competitor’s 3Yr . Result captured large market share and held price high.
Sludge back-flow in dewatering centrifuges decreased efficiency. Used flexible metal cloth as a curtain inside equip, allowing heavy sludge to pass underneath while blocking the passage of water.
Dependence on operator for difficult QC test prevented plant automation. Identified technology to monitor the same QC level by focusing on another material related property. Resulted in plant automation and opened the market for packaged modular plants.
Insufficient mine-output blending for process stability. Short-circuiting a portion of the flow through part of the blending process. Coordinating the short-circuit period with the major period of fluctuation overlapped concentration peaks with troughs. Result: The wave patterns of long-term and short-term component concentration fluctuations can be dramatically dampened.

 

 


Process Modeling

Process modeling can vary enormously in time and complexity, from minutes to months although the average takes a day or two.  Convincing a client to invest in process-modeling is never easy, however, the results and added insight into the critical issues are worth every cent.  In many cases it may be the only way to understand what is going on and why.

Preparing a mathematical model of a system or process demands a disciplined approach in compiling the data and relationships, which often uncovers critical information gaps.  The process of defining those 'gaps' is often very insightful and sometimes exposes a solution without much further work.

Many times the results surprise us.

 



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