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Nordkalk launches production of AtriGran – with systems engineering from EIRICH

Nordkalk is the leading manufacturer of high-quality limes and limestone-based products in Northern Europe. A production line has now been constructed in Poland for innovative new granulated products that are sold as soil improvers under the name AtriGran. EIRICH was awarded the task of planning and constructing the entire plant, which was commissioned in the fall of 2016.

As a result of both natural factors and man-made factors (such as acid rain), the pH value of soil is often in the acidic range. Consequently, nutrient availability is restricted, and reduced yield or even complete crop failures can result. In addition, plants may increase their uptake of heavy metals that are present in the soil. Lime-based products have been used for decades to raise the pH level of acidic soils, usually with a long-term effect. Nordkalk has now launched AtriGran, a soil improver that already increases the pH value of the soil soon after application.

EIRICH is well known in the industry for designing and realizing complete fertilizer plants that are individually tailored to the specific needs of the customer. Nordkalk faced a range of tough challenges for the production of AtriGran. The soil improver – a blend of lime and organic components in granulate form – needs to contain as little dust as possible, must be easy to handle and spread and also needs to act quickly. To do this, on the one hand the granulates need to be stable – but they also need to disintegrate quickly in the presence of soil moisture.

In many cases, an EIRICH mixing granulator is sufficient for mixing powdery raw materials and processing them into granulates. However, AtriGran demands a particularly narrow range of grain sizes; the mixer only supplies the fine granulate (pellet feed), which is then applied to pellet drums. This technology is also used if the binding forces in the granulate are not high enough to form larger granulates in the mixer.

With wide-ranging expertise and know-how in the planning and realization of plants combined with the use of tried and tested mixing, granulating and pelletizing technology, it was ultimately straightforward enough to meet all the requirements of the highly reactive carbonate product. It turned out to be particularly advantageous that EIRICH can offer not only mixers and mixing granulators, but also disk pelletizers from a single source.

At the EIRICH Test Center in Hardheim, customers from all around the world have access to both granulating and pelletizing systems. This means that the results from trials can be promptly incorporated in the design concept of a production system.

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Contact: Uwe Greissing, e-mail: