2006-06-06 - Paper manufacturer UPM’s plant at Shotton has achieved its goal of producing all its paper from recovered waste paper, rather than virgin wood, with the help of ABB variable speed drives.
ABB drives are used mainly on pumps in the process, using variable speed to match pump speed to the production rate. They are also used on chemical dosing pumps to accurately add chemicals to the pulp. Some conveyors on the process also use ABB variable speed drives.
The drives help control the process better, adjusting the inputs to the plant to maintain the correct pressure and temperature conditions. The drives also make it easier to control the production rate. Additionally, they contribute to energy savings by reducing the power drawn.
Ray von der Fecht, Project Automation Manager on the 100% Shotton project, says: “We chose ABB variable speed drives because ABB is a respected name, well known in the paper industry. Also, we know the products and the people. Overall, ABB offered a very good solution along with the best price.”
So well did the implementation phase go, that start-up of the system went according to plan, with the drives and automation system being switched on at the exact planned minute in the schedule. “It was like switching on a light,” says von der Fecht.
One of the UPM’s major criteria for the drives was maintainability. The drives had to be capable of being changed out quickly in the event of failure and also had to be easy to move. Interchangeable cards were also considered an advantage, allowing the company to keep dives running by simply changing some of the critical components.
Compact size was also part of the demand, to save on space, improve efficiency and heat loss and cut cooling costs. The ABB drives scored on all the points. Another useful feature was their ability to communicate over Profibus, the industry standard for communication in paper production. The drives also feature input line chokes to reduce harmonics fed to the network and output filters to reduce the electrical stresses on the motor windings.
High reliability was the most important criterion. Says von der Fecht: “We have had good experience with the ABB drives. They are certainly reliable and fulfil our needs.”
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