Design and Fabrication of Gas Kiln using Local Materials to Compose its Refractory Bricks and Mortar
AbstractThe dynamic roles of small scale ceramic industry in developing and promoting rapid industrialization are very critical and the success of ceramic artist or student depends on how to fire his or her works. One of such equipment needed for successful business is kiln. Kiln machines are used to fire or heat ceramic products. To ensure constant firing of ceramic products and reduce the rate at which trees are felled and used as fuel for firewood kilns, the adoption of an effective gas kiln is very necessary. The use of efficient gas kiln would greatly improve production rates of ceramic products and comparatively reduce the periods of firing in firewood kilns. The main objective of this study was to design and fabricate gas kiln machine so as to optimize its efficiency at low cost, reduce total time of firing ceramic wares in firewood kilns and produce quality fired pieces. The design of the gas kiln was achieved through proper focus on the materials and other design criteria for various component parts. The materials used to compose the refractory bricks were: Abonko clay 60%, Kaolin 25%, Bakakyire clay 10%, Sawdust 3.5%, and droplets of Sodium Silicate 1.5%. The gas kiln consisted of inner chamber, the main frame and gas transmitting valves. The results of the newly fabricated gas kiln machine shows that maintenance cost is cheap; firing time of wares is reduced and free from smoke. The gas kiln is therefore recommended for firing ceramic products.
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