Work in the Pulp & Paper manufacturing industry is never without unexpected challenges. In order to ensure a successful project, our engineers had to adapt to unplanned scheduling changes in such a way as to provide the customer with a safe, secure startup while the plant was still online.
Meeting the customer's production schedule meant installing a new/modified batch processing management system without having to stop overall plant production. Simulations and extensive testing substantially mitigated the chance for error during this high-risk/high-reward strategy. Although this type of software testing increased upfront labor costs, it provided significant return on the investment. The result was a downtime of one batch cycle, zero wasted raw materials or product, and uninterrupted paper-machine production.
To ensure mutual success, Avid worked with the customer to choose an option that would maximize safety and also meet production demands while minimizing labor cost and material waste. For this project, the customer had an existing Honeywell Experion Batch Management solution which successfully ran its three mixers and supporting equipment. But, plans for a new coating formulation required that the old system be updated. The change introduced a new ingredient, a new dispersing machine, several VFDs, and Ethernet/IP for device control. Both the batch management system and the graphics needed to be updated to accommodate these changes.
Avid’s site familiarity and extensive experience in creating feature rich C&A solutions, allowed our contractors to work with operations to identify and incorporate many quality of life (QoL) features into the project. At each step, the consultants at Avid proved to the customer that the install could be done safely and within the time window.
Some of the key factors in the success of the project included holding a 3-day Factory Acceptance Test (FAT), simulation, virtulization, backup planning and documentation. Given the overall success of this project, an online startup could be a preferential option for future companies.