According to CW Research’s recently published World Cement Equipment Market and Forecast Report, the global market of milling equipment (including upgrades) will reach USD 1.3 bn in 2022, accounting for 14 percent of the global cement equipment market size in the same year.

The expansion of the cement grinding/final grinding milling equipment segment will be encouraged by the rising number of grinding facilities relative to the sluggish installations of integrated plants in the next five years. Typical ton-per-day capacity of mills has remained largely unchanged in the past few years, standing at around 5,000-6,000 tons per day. Some cement manufacturers in India and the Middle East sometimes opt for larger capacities.

As observed by Robert Madeira, CW Group Managing Director and Head of Research: “milling is one of the few areas of cement process equipment where innovation continues to be ripe. It may seem that the vertical roller mills were the last game-changing innovation, but we are seeing equipment manufacturers going beyond business as usual and paying more attention to niche segments whose needs for mobility, ease of usage and super fineness were poorly catered for in the past.”

Vertical Roller Mills and niche segments take the lead

Improved performance and efficient electricity usage will enable Vertical Roller Mills (VRMs) to be the most popular mill choice (be it for raw meal, solid fuel or cement grinding) to the detriment of ball mills.

Even though VRMs large footprint is often considered as one of their major drawbacks (necessary to provide a foundation to the gears, so the installation does not vibrate), VRMs will still be preferred over the high maintenance and electricity-hungry ball mills. The latter will experience half of their current market size in USD by 2022.

The market size for roller presses, considered difficult to operate and not used to grind fuel, yet enabling high performance and efficient energy consumption for raw meal and cement grinding, will increase, since brownfields account for a large part of future projects (roller presses are usually installed when cement manufacturers wish to increase existing capacity).

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