Thirteen Rental Power units were needed to supply power for testing equipment in a newly constructed cement plant near the town of Palmar de Mexico. Cementos Cruz Azul, a producer of portland cement, faced restrictions testing its equipment and production was stalled when the local electric utility company experienced delays building a power transmission line to the plant. According to Ignacio Cruz, plant manager, large electrical motors are required to operate the crushers, rotate the massive kilns, and power the induced draft fans. By using rental power, the company avoided delays in commissioning the plant and was able to begin production six to eight months earlier.

“The new state-of-the-art cement plant was constructed, but there was no utility power available to test the plant's motors, fans, conveyors, crushers, and rotating kilns,” says Oswaldo Chimal, sales manager, Mexico and Central America, Rental Business, Cummins Power Generation.

Cummins was contracted and supplied two 2-MW trailerized generator sets and 11 1-MW trailerized units, each consisting of a generator, monitoring control, automatic transfer switch, and switchgear. The generators operated for one shift, eight hours/day for the first four months. The electrical testing included operating 2800 kW electric motors and motors with variable-frequency drives. After the equipment was tested, the next step was to begin processing raw materials to test production capabilities. For the next two months, the plant was able to produce limited amounts of cement by operating the units for two shifts, 16 hours/day.

Periodic maintenance is required for the units, however, it is handled by the Cummins Power Generation distributor. “When we were only operating the generators for eight hours a day, we scheduled oil and filter changes two times a month,” says Chimal. “When we were operating the generators for 16 hours a day, we increased our maintenance to three times a month.” The cement plant and a local fuel supplier handled daily refueling.

Cementos Cruz Azul was able to complete its equipment testing, as well as begin cement production, while the new transmission line was completed. The plant was able to operate at 80% of its full capacity by the time the Federal Commission of Electricity was able to supply power, saving the company both time and money.

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