How do mud balls form in lime kilns?, TAPPI Journal April 2023
ABSTRACT: Mud ball formation in lime kilns has been a persistent problem in many kraft mills, particularly for older kilns that are equipped with chains. A systematic laboratory study was conducted to examine how mud balls are formed and the key factors that affect ball formation. The results confirm the general mill experience that high moisture and high sodium contents in lime mud are the main contributing factors to ball formation. The high moisture content allows lime mud to agglomerate and grow to form balls, while the high sodium content helps make the balls hard and retain their shape. A ball formation mechanism is proposed to explain how mud balls form and grow near the kiln feed end.
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