Phosphate and fertilizer production

Phosphate and fertilizer production

Robust valve designs for process technologies in fertilizer production

The fertilizer industry offers farmers a wide range of phosphate fertilizers, most of which are extracted from apatite. Alternative sources of phosphate include domestic sewage and biomass residues. GEMÜ offers ideal valve designs for the various process technologies. 

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Valve designs in upstream processes for:

• DEN technology

• Mixing tank reactor technology

Valve designs in downstream processes for:

• Cleaning, concentration

• Drying, coating, granulation

• Spray condensation, fluidized bed granulation 

Valve designs in supportive processes for:

• Chemical supply lines

• Heating/cooling units

• Steam/water supply 

• Waste water treatment systems (scrubbers, waste water, etc.)

➥ Handling mineral acids correctly – preventing corrosion and abrasion

The production of phosphate fertilizers goes hand in hand with the production of mineral acids. The most important acids are phosphoric acid, sulphuric acid (as a main reagent) and nitric acid (as a reagent or additive). 

Suitable materials for chemically corrosive media

The production of acids and their use in the production process requires particular care when selecting materials for the process equipment. Although the process equipment and instrumentation are made from metallic materials (often cast iron, steel or stainless steel), an inner lining and coating with durable plastics, such as PFA, is required to prevent the corrosive acids from attacking the metal components.

Preventing abrasion damage

Another challenging aspect in the production of phosphate fertilizers is handling solids. Powders and media that contain suspended solid matter are abrasive and may cause serious damage to piping and valves. The coating of the inner surfaces with a rubber lining also helps to prevent this type of damage.

We are happy to personally advise you on the right material selection.

➥ Application – recycled fertilizer from renewable sources

Phosphate fertilizers can also be extracted by recycling biological waste, such as digestate and sludge. This approach is the trend in Europe because phosphate minerals are classified as critical raw materials that will run low all over the world in the coming years. Another important driving force behind this approach is the increasing contamination of ground water with phosphate and nitrate salts.

In an innovative process carried out by a GEMÜ customer, valuable phosphate salts are extracted from digestate and sludge. Over several steps, acids and bases are used to extract the phosphate, nitrogen and potassium compounds from the raw materials and to process them into fertilizers.

Read more about the application and which GEMÜ valves support this innovative recycling procedure here.

Valve selection for fertilizer production at a glance:

Butterfly valves

Diaphragm valves

Full bore diaphragm valves

Globe valves

Measurement and control systems

Modular and customized M-block solutions

Valve designs in fertilizer production info flyer

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