The countdown has begun! The environmental project is nearing completion

The Vác Cement Plant will soon recommence its operation with the latest technology as construction works are almost finished. We asked project leader Zsolt Szilágyi, Head of Production at Duna–Dráva Cement Kft. about the current and remaining tasks, achieved results and special technologies.


The last situation report on the events of the modernization was published in June 2017. What has happened since then? What kind of work processes were executed?

One of the biggest steps we have taken during the second part of last year was the completion of the steel structure of the calciner tower, in which we’ve built 500 tons of steel. We also started constructing the bypass system during autumn and just before Christmas we finished the installation of the upper part of the calciner pipe section on the top of the tower.

What was the most important task since last June?

As with every project implementation proper preparation and the scheduling of correlating tasks are of key importance. This is especially true in cases of multi-year processes. Any incidental delay has the potential to put the final deadline into jeopardy. Therefore during this period between the two years, while maintaining clinker production, it was necessary to construct the foundation, the new bypass silo and the steel structure supporting the new calciner. With the fulfilment of these tasks we prepared for the continuation of the works during the furnace shutdown period.

Was there any challenging tasks or special solutions during this period? If yes, how did you overcome them?

When we were building the bypass silo, concreting was being done around the clock for 10 days in order to get everything ready in the right time. Building the new steel structure was a challenge as well, since the works had to be done around and above the existing and operating, hot furnace. Our employees were securing the clinker production, while the contractors made sure that the project progresses as it should. At the most intensive period a total of 200 people were working at the same time in order to finish every task in time. We also included daily reviews to ensure the utmost work safety.

There were days when we were exposed to extreme weather conditions. On the hottest day of the modernization the temperature was 37 degrees Celsius, while during the coldest weather we recorded -22 degrees. Severe heat or cold can be a burden to everybody, so we paid close attention to our workers and ensured that their health does not suffer during the fulfilment of their tasks.

What is the current status of the modernization?

The project begun on the 2nd of January 2018 and now we are in its last three-month phase, which incidentally contains the most tasks. We started the deconstruction of the current furnace and filter technology and commenced the installation of the new technology replacing them. Parallel to the deconstruction works the contractors have started the preparatory works on the newly arrived machine elements as well.

Currently we are in the finishing phase of the project, when the last of the machine elements are being put into place. Fire resistant material is currently being built-in to the calciner, and the electrical wiring of the equipment and the setting-up of process control programs are also underway.

In addition, the main goal of the modernization is set to be implemented during this period. The old electro filter is being replaced by a modern bag-filter. This filter is responsible for the dedusting of the furnace. The new filter system benefits from its capability to prevent the leaking of dust even in case of malfunction or power outage. This means that we are able to further minimize our already very low-level dust emission. We’ve been using this technology in our Beremend Cement Plant for almost a decade now, and we believe that with this modernization we will be able to contribute to the protection of the environment in a similar way in Vác as we do in Beremend.

(The interview was conducted in March 2018.)