Pulp and Paper

Industries in the Paper Manufacturing subsector make pulp, paper, or converted paper products. The manufacturing of these products is grouped together because they constitute a series of vertically connected processes. More than one is often carried out in a single establishment. There are essentially three activities. The manufacturing of pulp involves separating the cellulose fibers from other impurities in wood or used paper. The manufacturing of paper involves matting these fibers into a sheet. Converted paper products are made from paper and other materials by various cutting and shaping techniques and include coating and laminating activities.

Assembly Line

🇬🇧 Sonichem secures €1.4 million to convert sawdust into high-value bio-based chemicals

📅 Date:

🔖 Topics: Funding Event

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: Sonichem, ACF Investors

Sonichem, an East Midlands-based startup that converts low-value forestry by-products into high-value, renewable biochemicals, has secured €1.4 million in Pre-Series A funding including a follow-on investment by ACF Investors. The investment will be used to further develop its technology and finalise plans for a biorefinery plant — the first of its kind.

Only 55% of logs that enter a sawmill become usable construction timber. The other 45% end up as low-value by-products such as woodchips and sawdust. Sonichem breaks down this feedstock through its novel patent process — combining chemistry and ultrasound technology — into three main constituent natural bio-based chemicals: sugars, cellulose and lignin. For every £1 of sawdust, Sonichem’s technology can create £8 worth of bio-based sustainable chemicals.

Read more at EU-Startups

‘Revolutionary’ digital printing technology uptake expected to accelerate for packaging

📅 Date:

✍️ Author: Katie Pyzyk

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: DS Smith, Georgia-Pacific, International Paper, WestRock, HP, Keypoint

The whir of a digital inkjet printer that spits out crisp, vibrant documents in mere seconds is a familiar reference to most Americans. Just as this innovation transformed home and office printing when it replaced legacy tools like the dot matrix printer, industrial-scale digital inkjet technology is now transforming the packaging space. Digital printing, on the other hand, does not rely on plates. Designers develop the desired image in a computer program and send the digital file to the inkjet mechanism that sprays ink droplets directly onto the packaging medium.

“Print is the traditional bottleneck in a converting facility, and if you remove that bottleneck you can streamline both upstream and downstream processes,” Wettersten said. “That’s where transformation begins to occur with digital printing, aligning systems and workflow and enabling new capabilities around responsiveness and flexibility.”

“What we’re seeing today is large corrugated companies starting to invest in web presses to totally change workflow,” he said. “The impact on lead times is rather eye-opening: You can take conventional lead times of 18 to 20 days for repeat orders down to fewer than five days on a digital press.”

Read more at Packaging Dive

Improved GRU prediction of paper pulp press variables using different pre-processing methods

📅 Date:

✍️ Authors: Balduíno César Mateus, Mateus Mendes, José Torres Farinha, António Marques Cardoso, Rui Assis, Hamzeh Soltanali

🔖 Topics: Gated Recurrent Unit, Predictive Maintenance

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: Lusófona University, University of Beira Interior, University of Coimbra

Predictive maintenance strategies are becoming increasingly more important with the increased needs for automation and digitalization within pulp and paper manufacturing sector.Hence, this study contributes to examine the most efficient pre-processing approaches for predicting sensory data trends based on Gated Recurrent Unit (GRU) neural networks. To validate the model, the data from two paper pulp presses with several pre-processing methods are utilized for predicting the units’ conditions. The results of validation criteria show that pre-processing data using a LOWESS in combination with the Elimination of discrepant data filter achieves more stable results, the prediction error decreases, and the predicted values are easier to interpret. The model can anticipate future values with MAPE, RMSE and MAE of 1.2, 0.27 and 0.30 respectively. The errors are below the significance level. Moreover, it is identified that the best hyperparameters found for each paper pulp press must be different.

Read more at Production & Manufacturing Research

A High-speed and High-precision Color Sensor for Improving Color Management in the Paper-making Process

📅 Date:

✍️ Authors: Kumiko Horikoshi, Ryuutarou Maki, Kazufumi Nishida

🔖 Topics: Sensor Design

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: Yokogawa

Thanks to the expanding retail business, the paperboard market in Asia is growing and thus the demand for paper color control is increasing. To meet this need, online measurement of paper chromaticity in the paper-making process is used to ensure strict quality control of paper color. Yokogawa has enhanced the functions of the LED color sensor for the B/M9000VP paper quality control system. A new high-sensitivity spectroscope enables high-sensitivity and high-speed measurements, and a moisture-proof coating on components has improved moisture resistance. With the enhanced functionality and robustness of the LED color sensor, the B/M9000VP has improved quality control in the paper-making process.

Read more at Yokogawa Technical Report

Researchers Consider the Circular Economy in Pulp and Paper Industries

📅 Date:

✍️ Author: Reginald Davey

🔖 Topics: Sustainability

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: University of Aveiro, University of Coimbra

The paper and pulp industries can benefit greatly from a cyclical model of manufacture. These industries are responsible for the consumption of most of the lignocellulosic biomass produced in the world. In 2020, the European paper and pulp industries alone consumed an estimated 146.5 million cubic meters of wood. The transition to a green economy approach is a chief concern in these industries.

Read more at AZO Materials

Tree to Box: The Billion Dollar Cardboard Business

ABB’s Paper Mill Technology Helps Renewcell Turn Old Clothes Into New Fabrics

📅 Date:

✍️ Author: Jim Vinoski

🔖 Topics: Circular Economy, Sustainability, Recycling

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper, Textiles

🏢 Organizations: ABB, Renewcell

In recent years, the pulp and paper industry has gone from having a reputation of being dirty and environmentally unfriendly to being a leader in sustainability and pollution control. Now the technologies that enabled that transition are being used to help the textile industry too. And the players involved are restarting a shuttered paper mill in Sweden to make it happen, once more providing good-paying jobs for the area.

Renewcell is the Sweden-based scaleup at the center of it all. The company developed a sustainable process that recycles waste textiles into a product called Circulose, whose name is the tip-off that it’s aimed at making fashion circular.

Read more at Forbes

Robotic Inspection for Aboveground Storage Tanks

📅 Date:

🔖 Topics: robotics, nondestructive test

🏭 Vertical: Petroleum and Coal, Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: Gecko Robotics

Aboveground Storage Tanks (AST) are vital assets for many industries including, power, paper and pulp, oil and gas, chemical, and even beverage production. Routine inspection of external and internal tank components is beneficial for understanding its condition and is required by federal and local laws and regulations. Robot-enabled ultrasonic testing (UT) offers a unique solution to AST inspections because they save plant operators valuable resources while providing more asset coverage and actionable data.

Read more at Gecko Robotics Blog

Reducing Energy Costs by 8% by Optimizing Autogenous Mills

📅 Date:

🔖 Topics: digital transformation, energy consumption

🏭 Vertical: Mining, Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: METRON

The grinding process alone accounts for 80% of the energy consumption. It consists of pulverizing limestone blocks to obtain the calcium carbonate used as a mineral filler in paper pulp.

Mills are the plant’s main equipment:

  • 5 x 355 kW autogenous mills operating without prior crushing;
  • 20 electric mills of various powers between 250 and 355 kW.

The case presented concerns only the autogenous mills, which are the most energy-consuming.

Read more at METRON Blog

From Logs to Logging On: Paper Machines Built With Digital Manufacturing

📅 Date:

✍️ Author: Harald Henkel

🔖 Topics: digital twin, digital manufacturing

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: Vajda Papir, ANDRITZ, Autodesk, Otorio

ANDRITZ, an Austrian company that manufactures machinery for pulp and paper mills, is using digital manufacturing and artificial-intelligence (AI) processes to save millions of dollars. Skilled workers and engineers on ANDRITZ production lines are now able to take advantage of data-driven support as standard. 3D modeling and digital twins also give ANDRITZ a competitive advantage by guiding operators safely through maintenance and repairs and ensuring transparent access to data.

Read more at Redshift by Autodesk

Process Control in Pulp and Paper Production

📅 Date:

🏭 Vertical: Pulp and Paper

🏢 Organizations: Knick

Numerous pH and conductivity sensors must ensure process quality at the various production stages during pulp production. Chemical pulping that is too intensive, or dosages of bleaching agents and residue that have not been monitored sufficiently, can damage fibers easily and reduce their strength, especially during boiling or bleaching. Such damage can only be detected in final quality controls, in which the cardboard or paper is tested for tear length, tear strength, and resistance to bursting. The intensity of the chemical pulping must therefore be monitored and regulated. This is done using conductivity measurements, in which the white liquor concentration in the pulp boilers is monitored.

Read more at Knick Blog

Raute smart plywood manufacturing process