Economy of total investment, personnel safety, easy machine usability and reduction of environmental load – these were the key targets guiding the development work of a wide group of experts responsible for Valmet’s new full-scope paper and board making concept, OptiConcept M. OptiConcept M represents a new, modular-based way to design, build and operate a paper machine. It is a concept for cost-efficient, high-quality and flexible paper and board making. As a single-supplier production line, it also means fewer risks and easier, more economical investment projects for the customer.
Valmet’s new OptiConcept M production line optimizes the machine investment in accordance with each mill’s capacity needs. These paper and board machines are specifically designed for mills in growing markets, and ensure maximum efficiency with minimal operating costs. The economy of OptiConcept M is founded on its modularity. The line is modularized to the core, from its machinery to all processes around the line. The concept combines the advantages of standardization and modular tailoring. The modular processes and solutions, set within optimally fixed machine widths, allow the designing of individual lines for each customer’s varying needs and targets. Lead times are fast, productivity is high and the investment is economical.
The operating profitability of OptiConcept M derives from its high overall efficiency – its energy-efficient and resource-efficient processes and its high-speed production. The most significant cost savings potential can be found in machine operation. For example, during a lifecycle of 10 years, only about 10% of an average recycled fluting machine’s costs are caused by the initial investment. The remaining 90% comes from operating costs.
OptiConcept M saves operating costs through precise process dimensioning, proven technological solutions, optimal running methods, effective maintenance operations and fully integrated automation solutions. These features result in minimized cost per ton produced, and in shorter investment payback.
One of the key targets of OptiConcept M was to develop more energy-efficient processes and solutions. The production line’s modularity provides vast energy-saving potential. For example, in the dryer section it can be up to 20% compared with an average production line.
Raw materials represent about 50% of total operating costs. Therefore, raw material efficiency was another important target – the replacement of expensive materials with cheaper ones, for example, or more production and new products with better properties using less raw material, or savings in virgin natural resources. This minimizes the cost per ton of paper for customers.
A further target was to reduce overall machine dimensions and machine hall space. The new, compact machine and process technology solutions require up to 40% less paper machine hall space. The inherent savings in construction and installation have a positive impact on the total investment cost.
At the heart of OptiConcept M one find well proven paper and board making processes. It is based on experience, long-term product and process development and thousands of managed projects. Technological innovations and proven processes together create a high-quality, flexible production line – one that would widen the range of end products by producing several grades, for example. Production can now be focused on those products where demand and prices are the most favorable.
With OptiConcept Valmet can take care of total project management, thus allowing customers to focus on their own businesses. In this arrangement Valmet will have one dedicated contact person, backed up by the experience and expertise of countless professionals. Valmet professionals can manage all phases of the project, including feasibility studies, engineering, installation, commissioning and production runs. Projects will experience cost savings due to short lead times, quick start-ups, high productivity and low risks – all adding up to more value for the customer.
Optimized environmental performance is at the core of the design of OptiConcept M. This kind of performance is possible because high-quality processes and innovations, smart controls and accurate dimensioning help our customers to consume less steam, gas, electricity, water, chemicals and other raw materials, and also reduce emissions. As a result, customers can meet or exceed even the strictest environmental regulations. The compact design and reduced amount of materials in manufacturing also remarkably decrease the carbon footprint of the machine.
OptiConcept M has been developed for its end users – the mill personnel. Both visually and physically, it has been designed with the requirements of its users in mind. For example, the design of the machinery allows for easy and safe changing of rolls and wear parts, thus reducing the duration and cost of service shutdowns. A totally new spacious walkway design also improves accessibility and safety on the drive side.
A further example is the walkway glass walls that isolate the running machine from its surroundings and effectively reduce noise. The industrial design and engineering innovations of OptiConcept M ensure that the mill is a safe, healthy and clean place to work, improving overall employee motivation and commitment.