Breaking records in paper mill productivity

2009-10-20 - A complete ABB power distribution and electrification solution is enabling a mega-size paper machine to break world speed and productivity records while minimizing power consumption in this, one of the world’s three most energy-intensive industries.

By ABB Communications

Following ABB’s handover of the composite plant solution for the PM12 paper line at Stora Enso’s Kvarnsveden paper mill in Sweden in 2005, the machine has twice set new world records for speed and productivity in the past four years.

With a capacity of 420,000 tons, PM 12 is the world’s largest paper machine for the production of supercalendered paper like newsprint and uncoated magazine paper.

The machine set its first world record of 1,901 meters per min in 2005 and extended the record to 1,926 meters/min during a 24-hour period in January 2009. Machine speed determines mill productivity and annual production capacity.

A key factor in raising and maintaining the high velocity of PM 12 is the 45 ABB variable speed drive systems that speed-control the process with exceptional accuracy.


With a capacity of 420,000 tons, PM 12 is the world’s largest paper machine for the production of newsprint and uncoated magazine paper. A key factor in raising and maintaining the high velocity of PM 12 is the 45 ABB variable speed drive systems that speed-control the process with exceptional accuracy.

Each of the drive systems has to operate at a different yet coordinated and highly precise speed. If they don’t, the web (paper) will break, reducing productivity and impairing product quality.


Energy efficiency begins with a well-designed power distribution and electrification system

The 45 drive systems are part of a large ABB Composite Plant Solution for PM12 - an all-in-one package in which ABB acted as EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) contractor and provided a complete power distribution and electrification solution including engineering design, construction, integration of all products and systems, as well as commissioning.

The package was one of the largest that ABB has delivered to the pulp and paper industry. Hundreds of ABB variable speed drives and high efficiency motors - as well as fine-tuning of the power system at each stage of the process and precision control by ABB’s award-winning System 800xA control system - ensure that the mill's energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions are falling year-on-year, and are among the lowest in the industry.

Over the years ABB has supplied many Stora Enso pulp and paper mills with extensive power and automation solutions that improve the efficiency and productivity of the company’s operations.

Most recently, the two companies formed a joint venture to run maintenance operations and improve efficiency at six Stora Enso plants in Finland. The joint venture is based on ABB’s Full Service® concept for improving the performance and reliability of production assets. It is the largest agreement of its kind in the pulp and paper industry.

Click here to read more about the full scope and benefits of ABB’s solution for the world’s biggest and fastest paper line for the production of supercalendered paper (477 kB)



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    For the PM12 paper line at Stora Enso’s Kvarnsveden mill in Sweden, each of 45 ABB drive systems operates at different yet coordinated and highly precise speeds. The machine is the world's largest producer of newsprint and uncoated magazine paper.

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