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The determination of kiln axis position is a fundamental part of every kiln inspection. Our methodology base on the solution that has been tested for nearly 40 years. The kiln axis of rotation is defined by determining tires’ centers with simultaneously conducted measurements of tires’ diameters and under-tire clearance (by measuring migration between tire and kiln shell).

The method applied by us is based on high precision theodolite measurement of the tires’ vertical tangential generating lines both sides of the kiln and in the same coordinate system.
The method is thus free from the influence of temperature fields and measuring errors of tires’ circumference (elimination of measuring wheel slip error). Furthermore, measurements are taken during normal kiln operation, independently in four positions of tires (every 90 degrees) from both sides (two reference lines).

As a principle, each measurement is taken two times. Such an attitude allows to determine kiln axis deformation with a precision below +/- 1 mm with highest reliability. Furthermore, measurements and calculations give results of real tires’ diameters, undertire clearances, cyclical horizontal displacement of piers and the analysis of results accuracy with the consideration of tires’ shape (deviation from circularity).

During kiln axis measurements we still base on the methodology worked out by PhD Eng. Bolesław Krystowczyk, the founder of Geoservex, albeit with use of the latest high precision instrumentation. Numerous comparison tests proved its precision and – maybe first of all – its advantage of results high reliability. The survey is mostly remote what protect our experts from conditions resulting from kiln operation. At the same time, they are working close to key kiln components and may notice important symptoms and dangers. In principle mechanical kiln inspection is not a separate process. We are monitoring kiln day by day during daily works …

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we see it like this ...


  1. Setting up the surveying bases for the kiln: two horizontal reference lines and benchmarks on each pier.
  2. Measurement of kiln axis position in horizontal and vertical plane.
  3. Measurement of rollers’ axis position, rollers’ skewing and operating angle.
  4. Measurement of rollers’ inclination and foundation frame axial slope
  5. Measurement of rollers’ profiles (mechanical wear of running surface)
  6. Measurement of rollers’ shaft deflection in reference to the pier (indication of shell crank formation)
  7. Measurement of thrust roller position in reference to the kiln axis
  8. Measurement of tires and shell temperatures
  9. Measurement of tire migration (circumferential tire movement) and calculation of undertire clearance.
  10. Measurement of shell profile (circularity deviation and eccentricity of cross sections), preparation of shell polar diagrams and shell 3D animation model
  11. Measurement of tires and girth gear wobbling
  12. General mechanical inspection of drive mesh, bearings and shafts condition, lubrication efficiency, inlet and outlet sealing, thrust unit, adjustment equipment, covers and housing.
  13. Calculations of axial deviations in horizontal and vertical plane and kiln slope
  14. Preparation of optimal version of adjustment program and schedule
  15. Supervision over adjustment procedure carried out by technicians of the Cement Plant
  16. Control survey of final kiln axis position and rollers skewing after the adjustments.
  17. Preparation of completed report on measurements and adjustments
  18. Preparation of recommendations for future preventive maintenance actions, routines, necessary repairs and replacements.
  19. Presentation and submission of the report and shell animation to the Customer
  20. OPTIONAL 1: Shelltest – elastic shell deformation survey, shell ovality check
  21. OPTIONAL 2: Measurement of kiln drive system geometry: gear, pinion, shafts, reducer, engine (the kiln must be stopped due to safety reasons)
  22. OPTIONAL 3: Recalculation of kiln mechanical parameters: current loads on piers, pressure on bearings, Hertz pressures, bending stress in the shell, stress in the tires, calculation of stiffness matrix, optimization of kiln vertical axis position considering load distribution (All results must be treated solely as technical opinion. Geoservex do not take any responsibility for changes in kiln loads or kiln design.)


Unique solutions

From the beginning of its existence, the company „GEOSERVEX” is developing, implementing and realizing unusual and highly precise geodetic measurements. The most specialized field of our activity are measurements and analyses of rotary machine deformations (patents, national and foreign publications) and measurements of ground displacements of industrial structures, constructions and equipment.

The engineers of our company have developed many new technologies, devices and software that have been rewarded with scientific, industrial and business awards. Our original achievements are methods of measuring and aligning machines during their operation, hot kiln alignments, which is an achievement often quoted in professional technical literature in many countries.
The most contemporary laser, code and computer devices have been utilized in a creative way – automating measurements and calculations. The analyses are not limited to presentation of results but they also provide data and guidelines for aligning and supervising machine repairs.
Our hot kiln alignment method and equipment are the subject of technology transfer among others to India and Russia, recently preparations are in progress for China market.

3D animation of rotary kiln shells

Measurements of rotary kiln shell deformation constitute a significant part of our extensive offer of kiln inspection. Geoservex was the pioneer in the field of these measurements, covering the scope ranging from simple measurements of distance and geometric approximation of a cross-section shape, to linear laser scanning and unique computer software development enabling the calculation of shell eccentricity in a particular cross-section and its shape deformation (circularity). The next step of the development of this service is our newest product – a three-dimensional computer animation of a rotating kiln shell, presenting its measured shape deformations (cross-section eccentricity and circularity deformations). Additionally, this model has been enhanced with a visualization of tyres rotation together with their wobbling (axial unbalance) and radial run-out. A combination of all the parameters in one virtual graphic model creates a perfect tool to assess the state of the kiln shell, the reason for tyre and drive ring unbalance, as well as to plan repairs, replacement of some parts of the shell, and to plan correction cuts. Moreover, a comparison between the shell deformation and the measurements of support roller shafts deflection enables the detection of mechanical crank formation, and with additional temperature measurements, also of the shell thermal crank formation. The shell computer animation has been prepared in a way that, despite its advancement, it is easily operated. Therefore, the end product is saved in the PDF format and can be opened and viewed with a popular and free Acrobat Reader.


We know from our practice, events when a kiln frequently has bearing overloads (hot bearings), shell cracks, roller shaft cracks, frame cracks in spite of measuring alignment and adjustment. In these cases, the kiln should be again mechanically verified. This process is reverse to design: the same parameters are checked but the kiln is real, and the process is based on real dimensions and production parameters. There are cases of an uneven distribution of support loads with simultaneous dimensional overdesign for stress the kiln shell, which lets the kiln axis position optimize. This technique has been known by producers for many decades but it is not widely offered.


In Geoservex we do understand that kiln maintenance is not a piece of cake.

Our regular clients share maintenance issues with us asking for help and assistance in resolving both small and serious problems. We are open for such cooperation providing our support, free of charge.

Too much load on your shoulders?

Contact us at and describe the kiln issues you face. We’ll get back to you with advice and technical support based on our long term experience*. No matter where you are and who made your last kiln inspection, we’ll do our best to help. Work with professionals.

*Please allow us to reply within 3 working days. Technical advice is free of charge, any action taken by the client is at their own risk.

When you describe symptoms use your camera to visualize it. One picture tells more than 1000 words…