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Stora Enso and Aalto University to build special stage for public debate forum SuomiAreena

Aalto University and Stora Enso have joined hands in building Finland. The outcome of the co-operation is the Aika (Time) stage for the public debate forum SuomiAreena, in Finland, in honour of Finland’s centenary year of independence. The base of the stage is made up of 50 laminated veneer lumber frames with 100 legs symbolising Finland’s era of independence.

Students at Aalto University’s Department of Architecture were given the challenge of designing a stage using Stora Enso’s LVL material in just 100 hours. The design had to be of high architectural quality and innovative, and meet the technical requirements of SuomiAreena. Antti Hannula and Antti Rantamäki, students of landscape architecture were selected winners of the competition.

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“Stora Enso wants to promote the use of renewable materials and show what a tree can do. We have been involved in planning and organising several events that celebrate Finland 100 years. Through our participation in SuomiAreena, we can communicate the opportunities of building with wood as well as our other renewable solutions. The Aika stage will be implemented in the spirit of the centenary together with Aalto University, using high-quality Finnish wood material and design and processing expertise,” says Seppo Parvi, Stora Enso’s CFO and Country Manager Finland.

“At Aalto University, we are educating game changers who are able to see and combine science, arts and business in a new way. Aalto was recently ranked as one of world’s 55 technology challenger universities, and it maintains close contact with business and society at large. The Aika stage to be built for SuomiAreena is an outstanding piece of work, reflecting our values and ways of operating,” says Eero Eloranta, Aalto University’s Vice President of Education.

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“The Aika stage will be one of the highlights of the week-long SuomiAreena event. Visitors can see anything but traditional panel debates on the stage. During the week, there will be cooking, innovations, business pitches, hackathons and a cavalcade of the most interesting projects of the Finland 100 programme,” says Mari Haavisto, Executive Producer of SuomiAreena.

The surface area of the Aika stage is 285 square metres, and the spectator area contains 150 seats. The stage will be built of Stora Enso’s structurally strong LVL, which is manufactured in Varkaus, Finland. The stage is covered with translucent Vitrea profiled glass.

The Aika stage will be built in front of the Sokos Hotel Vaakuna, at Gallen-Kallelankatu 7, Pori, for the duration of the SuomiAreena forum (10‒14 July 2017). Once the event is over, the stage will be moved to Aalto University’s campus in Otaniemi, Espoo, to enrich the lives of students and the public.

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Stora Enso is a leading provider of renewable solutions in packaging, biomaterials, wooden constructions and paper on global markets. Our aim is to replace fossil-based materials by innovating and developing new products and services based on wood and other renewable materials. We employ some 25 000 people in more than 35 countries, and our sales in 2016 were EUR 9.8 billion. Stora Enso shares are listed on Nasdaq Helsinki (STEAV, STERV) and Nasdaq Stockholm (STE A, STE R). In addition, the shares are traded in the USA as ADRs (SEOAY). storaenso.com

Aalto University: Shaping the future. Aalto University is a community of bold thinkers where science and art are together with technology and business. We are committed to identifying and solving grand societal challenges and building an innovative future. Aalto University has 11 000 students and more than 400 professors. Our campuses are located in Espoo and Helsinki, Finland.

disclamer: The illustrations are based on sketches and do not necessarily conform to the final appearance and structure

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Who’s the world’s best forwarder operator?

For anyone who wants to experience steel nerves, quick decisions and powerful machines, one hot tip is the stand of the Swedish Association of Forestry Contractors at Elmia Wood.

“During the fair we’re holding the Swedish School Forwarder Championships, the Swedish Forwarder Championships and the Forwarder World Cup. There’s going to be a lot of action!” promises Karl-Magnus Hembjer of the association.

Entrants from eleven countries are currently registered for the world championship, the Forwarder World Cup.

2017 05 18 095149During the fair you can see the Swedish School Forwarder Championships, the Swedish Forwarder Championships and the Forwarder World Cup. Photo: Skogsentreprenörerna

“It’s a high-speed competition with the entrants competing against each other simultaneously on two parallel courses,” Hembjer explains. “First they have to load logs – some fairly easy and others placed under various types of obstacles. If they miss any, they have to load extra penalty logs.”

The competitors then have to build a freestanding tower out of blocks of wood.

“The blocks have to be stacked as quickly and sturdily as possible,” Hembjer says. “This element usually involves great action when the operator who is lagging behind must try to catch up by taking extra risks.”

Prestige plus 1,500 Euro

Before reaching the finish line, operators face yet another challenge, when the first person to pick up a specially marked log wins.

“The competitions demonstrate speed, precision and safety thinking and are a good way to create interest in the job of a forwarder operator,” Hembjer says. “We want to present the forest as an attractive workplace. The broad range of visitors who come to Elmia Wood means that we come into contact with the forwarder operators of the future.”

Is there a favourite to become world champion?

“One name to watch is Sweden’s Martin Svensson, who’s won the World Cup before, but it’s always very close-run and exciting so there should be many possible winners,” Hembjer says.

As well as the honour of being the world’s number one, the winner of the Forwarder World Cup also receives 1,500 Euro.

The Swedish Forwarder Championships and the Swedish School Forwarder Championships

As well as the Forwarder World Cup, the Swedish Forwarder Championships and the Swedish School Forwarder Championships will also be held during Elmia Wood. The competitions are run on two parallel courses and two different types of machine are used. The qualifying heats are held first, followed by the semi-finals and then the decisive final heat.

See the list of participants in all forwarder competitions here

Forwarder World Cup 2017
Thursday 8 June:
Qualifying heats 10.30-16.00

Friday 9 June:
Quarter-finals  10.15
Semi-finals 12.45 and 13.15
Final (followed by award ceremony) 14.30

Swedish Forwarder Championships
Saturday 10 June:
Qualifying heats 10.00
Semi-finals 12.30 and 13.00
Final (followed by award ceremony) 14.00

Swedish School Forwarder Championships
Wednesday 7 June:
Qualifying heats 10.00-12.00
Semi-finals 13.00 and 13.30
Final (followed by award ceremony) 14.30

Elmia Wood 7-10 June

Elmia Wood is the world’s leading forestry fair and is held every four years outdoors in the forest south of Jönköping, Sweden. The last Elmia Wood (2013) had over 500 exhibitors and 50,000 visitors from around the world and was monitored by the international trade press. On 7–10 June 2017 the global forest industry will gather once more.

www.elmiawood.com

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Valve World Expo 2018: Terrifically strong lightweights

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Even though they appear quite twinkle-toed, they in fact are heavyweights due to their increasing role in plant engineering. Valves made from plastic meanwhile are part of the product range. The reason is simple enough: they are light and don’t take up too much space. As one can imagine, plastic valves face a bright future.

Valves don’t necessarily need to be made from, for example, stainless steel, or grey cast iron. Plastic valves are used in numerous areas to convey fluids through pipes, and they need not shy away from uncomfortable environments. “Plastic valves have a lot of advantages, especially in areas where aggressive media are used,“ emphasises Uwe Schmezer, head of product and application management, Gemue. An important advantage is the material’s low weight.

Wetted parts made from plastic

Diaphragm valves are used quite often. They are appreciated for their ability to accurately regulate volume flows, and at the same time they are easy to automate. Even better, they can be used with neutral and aggressive media in a liquid or gaseous state. They are therefore attractive for makers of plastic valves. “All wetted parts of these valves are made from high quality plastics and thus have high chemical resistance,“ reports Schmezer about Gemue’s valves.

The membranes of the company are made from chemically modified, second-generation PTFE. Chemical resistance is very high, according to Gemue the material PTFE wears out significantly slower than a soft elastomer under steam conditions.

Suited for extreme requirements

Plastic and ball valves can also be a winning match. Here, the wetted parts, as well as the actuator housing, are made from plastic. This makes them suitable for clean media, which can be aggressive or neutral, fluid or gaseous, without negatively impacting the physical and chemical properties of the respective housing and sealing material. A ball valve from Gemue has a maximum permissible operating temperature of 120 degrees Celsius, depending on operating pressure and body and diaphragm material.

Plastic valves thus certainly are usable in extreme environments, such as the chemical and pharmaceutical industry. Water treatment, environmental engineering, automobile industry and galvanisation are further areas of use. Sectors which have a great demand for components, especially in so-called emerging markets.

Water and chemical industries are attractive markets

As far as water supply is concerned, the situation is dramatic for the world’s population. 1.2 billion people don’t have access to clean drinking water. A further matter of concern also is that there aren’t enough sanitary installations of adequate quality available for 2.6 billion people on the planet. On top of it all, global water consumption has tripled since 1950. The market volume for construction works, machines, plants and services in the water and wastewater treatment sector adds up to between 460 and 480 billion US dollars each year. Valves make up a certain portion of the investments.

In addition, last year investments in the chemical industry grew in nearly all EU 28 states. Expenditures which are worthwhile for the sector. Take Germany, for instance: the German chemical industry association (VCI) expects growing demand for chemicals produced by the German chemical industry. Especially Asia and Latin America are boosting demand. According to the study “The German Chemical Industry 2030“ published by research institute Prognos in cooperation with the VCI, exports of chemical products could grow by 40 percent until 2030. A development valve manufacturers in general stand to benefit from, as well as makers of plastic valves.

Application determines choice

The pharmaceutical industry also offers good prospects. According to „Pharmafakten“, an initiative of pharmaceutical companies in Germany, the sector is experiencing continuous growth. “Since 1992 global turnover of pharmaceutical products has increased by more than quadrupled. The main reason are more and more new innovations, which make the treatment of previously untreatable possible, or improves therapy.“ Once again, this is good news for the valve sector.

SchuF, for instance, has created special solutions for the pharmaceutical and fine chemicals industries. Valves manufactured by the company are indeed made from metal, but lined with PTFE or PFA on the inside. Mainly bottom outlet disc valves are used. “Valves need to resist higher pressures – therefore metal bodies are necessary – and have to be easy to clean on the inside, making plastic lining suitable,“ explains sales director David Donne, SchuF.

As such, manufacturing valves lined with PTFE or PFA is costlier than a standard valve made from metal. “Lining valves is an additional manufacturing step when making valve bodies,“ adds David Donne.

Even though the pharmaceutical and fine chemicals industries traditionally tend to use enamelled valves, especially as the reactors have an enamel coating, “we have experienced a moderate increase for plastic lined valves.“

A trend is the demand for additional functions, “for instance the integration of process analytical technology (PAT), which can be integrated into valves with either plastic or enamel coating,“ reports the sales director of SchuF.

The layout of a piping system and which plastic valves are selected is determined by the application. “Based on the knowledge of the chemical, thermal and physical requirements a matching plastic valve is determined,“ explains Uwe Schmezer, Gemue. When determining which plastic valves to use, further parameters such as media, flow rates, pressure ranges, solids content and temperature ranges need to be considered.

Acceptance is increasing

PVC (polyvinyl chloride), PP (polypropylene) and PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride) are amongst the most commonly used plastics for valves. PVC, one of the oldest and most frequently used plastics, is resistant against chemicals and does not react to humidity. Its thermal resistance, however, is not the best, and its impact strength is low. In turn, the thermal resistance of PP is good, as well as its chemical and mechanical properties. PVDF is very tough and highly resistant against especially corrosive chemicals – the plastic is also convincing thanks to its very smooth surface.

The advantageous properties have seen the acceptance of plastics as a material for valves rise over the years. A widespread preconception has thus also been proven wrong, namely that this material wouldn’t find any general application in valves, for instance in ball and diaphragm valves. As a matter of fact, plastic valves are being used in various sectors.

Plastic multiport valve blocks are a trend

As plastic valves also have to cope with critical media and environments, „Atmosphères Explosibles”, they have to be made in line with the ATEX directives, which harmonise various requirements within the EU. Since April 2016 a new ATEX directive is in effect: 2014/34/EU. Since 20. April 2016, only products that fulfil it can be sold and distributed with the EC declaration of conformity. Using plastic valves with highly flammable mixed media, must fulfil strict requirements.

Trends arise from the numerous possibilities offered by plastic valves. One such trend is the rise of multiport valve blocks made from plastic. They are light, don’t require much space, are quick to assemble and are multifunctional. „These requirements play an ever increasing role for plant components,“ explains Schmezer. Complicated dosing of fluids “usually takes place today over lots of single valves.“ These are connected over as much fittings and pipes with each other. A lot of space, however, is required, and assembly is laborious due to the high number of single parts. “At the same time each installation site and pipe connection is a potential leakage point, increasing the security risk. Compact multiport valve blocks made from plastic offer themselves as ideal components.“ They are space-saving and can assume various functions. Multiport valve blocks made from plastic – a product offering opportunity.

A promising and exciting future

Experts see great potential for plastic valves, also thanks to the material being developed further. As this progresses, one can expect a lot from the material. Needless to say, this makes plastic valves an exciting and promising topic for the future.

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How RocktTenn (WestRock) Doubled their Speed, OEE and Reliability

All manufacturing leaders know what’s expected of them. They face financial statements, customers, stakeholders, etc. on an ongoing basis. There’s no denying the what. Truly world-class leaders continually search for the best how, and they ask, how are we going to do this? What is the best way to achieve our expectations? Even the best companies struggle with asking and implementing these questions, and they’ll struggle with it at the top of the organization. Once Leadership has consensus on the how, then it’s just a matter of maintaining that commitment and continually communicating that vision to the organization.

2017 04 19 090254Beau Groover, Director of Performance Excellence with RockTenn (WestRock), says “RockTenn was not much different from most companies in how it previously established goals. We would look at where we are performing currently in a measure and then say, ‘How do we improve that by 5 percent, how do we improve that by 3 percent?’ And that would set about how they frame up their resources and their capital and their people.”

RockTenn (WestRock) is a leading producer of corrugated and consumer packaging and recycling solutions; and is one of several companies that reached out to Performance Solutions by Milliken to helped adopt their own, unique version of the Milliken Performance System (MPS). An award-winning system geared to compliment, revamp, and accelerate current performance systems towards new levels of success.

At RockTenn, Groover serves as a conduit interacting with teams working in plants, managing the relationship with Performance Solutions, and bringing information to RockTenn’s steering committee. He says, “at the end of the day, there are thousands of books written on lean, six sigma, and TPS. If the leadership isn’t capable or willing to go through what it takes to build a high-performing team, it doesn’t matter how many tools and how many super-duper black belts you hire, you’ll never get there. And the Milliken system, in my opinion, focuses directly on the culture. And that’s what has enabled them to reach the performance levels they have.”

Groover notes that the Performance Solutions approach is heavily weighted on the front end to how an organization puts in the Performance System, and, on the back end, weighted to the actual performance it gets from the system. “We get so wrapped up in the results that we fail to look at the process.” He uses a baseball analogy of how well a team conducts batting and fielding practice will usually parallel with how well the team performs in a game. In manufacturing, it means focusing on the processes that yield an output target, such as OEE, rather than how to move the metric.

“Through the Milliken process, we’re trying to get our plants thinking about OEE as an output mechanism,” says Groover. “How well we run the equipment, how well we train our associates, how well we take care of our equipment, how well we prepare our inventory — all of that leads to the result. And the result is a high OEE number, which is what we want.” In approximately one year, the process work at RockTenn began to move the organization across never before seen thresholds of performance, adds Groover, yielding double-digit improvements in speed, OEE, and reliability. “We’ve uncovered/created the equivalent of 3 full sites worth of capacity that we didn’t even know was achievable. The financial impact of that goes far beyond the P/L and starts impacting decisions such as capital investment and footprint rationalizations.”

“It’s a different way of thinking about where your problems are and where your opportunities lie. We become very accepting of our reality that we see. We start just accepting things instead of challenging them to say, ‘Why does it work like that, or why do we have that failure, or why do we have that downtime?’ The Performance System takes all that emotion and acceptance out of it, and it makes it a data question. Here’s where you’re performing. Here’s where you’re losing dollars. What are you going to do about it?”

ABOUT PERFORMANCE SOLUTIONS BY MILLIKEN
Performance Solutions by Milliken brings a unique, Practitioner-based value proposition to its clients and has built an enviable record of helping companies achieve substantial and sustainable improvements in their operations and safety excellence efforts. This approach, built on the foundation of lessons learned while Milliken & Company created and implemented its own world-class performance system, helps client organizations engage and empower their associates by working side-by-side to establish a culture of continuous improvement and drive breakthrough operations impact. Performance Solutions currently serve companies in more than 100 operating locations in 28 countries across a wide range of industry sectors.
performancesolutionsbymilliken.com

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ANDRITZ highlights top-notch technologies for technical nonwovens and textiles at Techtextil 2017

ANDRITZ Nonwoven, part of international technology Group ANDRITZ, is targeting processes for technical nonwovens and textiles at Techtextil in Frankfurt, Germany (May 9-12, hall 3, booth B15). In response to market demands, ANDRITZ Nonwoven has yet again raised the bar for leading turnkey and individual solutions in air-through bonding, needlepunch, spunlace, spunjet, thermobonding, wetlaid, and technical textiles as well as excellent service.

Real value with the right choice
The market share for durable applications, such as geotextiles, agriculture, automotive, roofing, or home furnishings, covers well over 50% of the nonwovens market. ANDRITZ offers manifold technologies, which are perfectly suited to these end uses. The supreme importance of uptime and productivity is ensured by ANDRITZ’s service expertise. Benefit from a smooth production process.

Cutting-edge needlepunch technologies – a recipe for success
Driven by the vibrant market for durable nonwovens, ANDRITZ presents the neXline needlepunch with the innovative, high- speed Dynamic crosslapper, operating at up to 205 m/min at the input. The renowned ProDyn capabilities are able to reduce fiber consumption drastically. Profit from fabric weight evenness and a significant cost reduction.

Another major asset is the “Dynamic Harmonic Shifter” (DHS), which steadies higher machine frames that are susceptible to vibration. DHS technology harmonizes the frequency to minimize vibration effects, which could possibly ruin a machine. Another added value is the productivity boost for such applications as rib needling up to 20 m/min.

Yet another innovation is the ANDRITZ Nonwoven neXmatrix simulator system. This system identifies, configures, and optimizes various process solutions in order to streamline functions. It answers specific needs such as production capacity, width, versatility, investment payback, and fabric range by configuring the production line to meet the exact requirements. Visit our booth to find out more.

2017 03 27 141146ANDRITZ needlelooms “Photo: ANDRITZ”.

A single source for all wetlaid processes
The ANDRITZ neXline wetlaid opens the door for niche market manufacturers offering products made from special fibers such as aramid, carbon, micro-glass, and other high-tech fibers and is the right choice for the production of the automotive, aerospace, agricultural, construction, medical/hygiene, and household end uses. Right down the line from stock preparation, wet forming, drying, coating, and on to the winder, ANDRITZ ensures that all components are harmonized. Numerous options are available to meet individual needs.

2017 03 27 141024ANDRITZ neXline wetlaid “Photo: ANDRITZ”.

Create added value for spunlaid nonwovens
ANDRITZ offers two unique solutions: Spunjet Bond and Spunjet Splittable. Spunjet Bond targets in-line hydroentanglement of spunlaid filament for versatile applications such as roofing, packaging, protective covering, hot gas filtration, and molding. SpunjetSplittable focuses on advanced business opportunities like acoustic and thermal insulation for durable fabrics. This technology is also particularly useful for splitting spunlaid bi-component filaments. Recently, the Nonwovens Institute in Raleigh, NC, USA, invested in a Reicofil RF4 Spunbond line including ANDRITZ Spunjet equipment to build the next generation of nonwoven applications.

ANDRITZ enhances its textile product portfolio
Together with the prestigious ramisch® technologies, ANDRITZ has made its way to the top of the textile calender market. The ANDRITZ teXcal calender range powered by ramisch® is characterized by highest quality standards, top performance, reliability, flexibility, and state-of-the-art, deflection-controlled rolls for any textile application. Take advantage of this all-embracing, first-class product and service portfolio.

Watch tomorrow unfold today.
A virtual reality show at the ANDRITZ stand will give you a 360° insight into the progressive and diverse production lines. Make a mark. Mark your visit to ANDRITZ (Hall 3, booth B15)!

The ANDRITZ GROUP
ANDRITZ is a globally leading supplier of plants, equipment, and services for hydropower stations, the pulp and paper industry, the metalworking and steel industries, and for solid/liquid separation in the municipal and industrial sectors as well as for animal feed and biomass pelleting. Other important business segments include automation and service business. In addition, the international Group is also active in the power generating sector (steam boiler plants, biomass boilers, recovery boilers, and gasification plants) and in environmental technology (flue gas cleaning plants) and offers equipment for the production of nonwovens, dissolving pulp, and panelboard as well as recycling plants. The publicly listed technology Group is headquartered in Graz, Austria, and has a staff of approximately 25,200 employees. ANDRITZ operates more than 250 sites in over 40 countries.