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Automating Stock Refining: The Time to Transform is Now

The approach to refining furnish in the stock preparation area of a paper mill has remained the same for decades. Paper machines churn out millions of tons of paper every year, but it is difficult for mill managers to know precisely what refiners in the stock preparation are doing. It is essential to open the black box, peer into the impact of refining and the quality of incoming furnish, and understand the relationships that can impair production. To achieve optimal refining operations, stable conditions must exist. To control production conditions, paper machine operators must be able to measure the various furnish properties pertinent to refining accurately. However, until recently, ways to do this have been limited.

Technology is Transforming Pulp Refining

Fortunately, this is changing. Technology is transforming pulp and paper mill operations. From online sensors that can measure freeness to analyzers positioned along the production line to analyze and control furnish properties, technology is the best way for mills to reduce costs, increase throughput, improve efficiencies, and increase revenue.

Paper mills can benefit from new technologies in many ways. For example, sensors and other data collection devices can be added to collect data that can be analyzed to improve operations. When connected to a control system that can historize real-time data, these sensors can help mills measure and analyze their refining operations more accurately. The benefits of integrating this technology into your mill operations will pay for the cost of doing so quicker than you think. But it is no easy task to learn what technology is available, understand how it works, and harness it for your mill.

Pulmac Assesses Where Mills Can Harness Data

This is where Pulmac comes in. We have researched for you. With decades of pulp and paper experience, we understand where mills need help. With that information, we searched for the best and most innovative technologies and applications available to help mills improve efficiency, increase production, and grow profits. As a result, we believe the significant potential exists to automate the refining operation and capture savings from tracking small fluctuations while preventing them from becoming a bigger problem.

Pulmac’s Automating Pulp Refining Blog Series

This is the first in a series of articles. In each article, we will share what we have learned and show how meaningful data collection and in-depth data analysis can benefit your mill operations. There are devices and technologies mills can add to their toolboxes to improve operations. We will introduce you to some exciting new products that can help mills gather real-time data and make adjustments immediately on the production line. We will discuss why measuring freeness is essential and how the data from those measurements can help you speed production, reduce costs, and decrease production line breaks. And we will show you how online measurements of furnish properties along the production line can help you analyze, stabilize and optimize production for various paper grades.

Consider these articles an introduction to new technologies. We encourage you to contact our team at Pulmac to learn more. Then, we can work with you to understand where your mill has opportunities to harness the latest online testing, analysis, monitoring, and automation solutions.

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