2nd International Congress on Ceramics, ICC 2008, Verona, Italy, 29 June - 04 July 2008
During ceramic tile production (wall, floor and porcelain stoneware) wet grinding process for the preparation of ceramic mixes is widely used. The currently preferred wet grinding machines are discontinuous and/or continuous ball mills, where grinding occurs when a particle is crushed between two pieces of grinding media. Ball milling is, however, not a cost effective method, especially in preparation of porcelain tile slurries since finer particle size/higher surface area is required. In order to improve grinding efficiency in wet milling, new milling machines such as "agitated/stirred media mills" have already been designed and employed. In this particular study, a combination of discontinuous ball mill and agitated media mill was utilized as a cost effective way of slip preparation for porcelain tile production. Experimental trials were performed under industrial conditions in a local tile company. The results were compared in terms of grinding efficiency and energy requirements. Furthermore, the sintering behavior and its effects on technological properties of the final product were further investigated. According to the results, such a combination was proved to generate around 40% energy saving for milling of porcelain tile body slip compared to that of classical ball milling.