Manufacturers' news

Arkhangelsk LDK No 3: Pellet mill - smart records

13 November 2013

What is the main difference between wastes and by-products? Let us consider sawmilling and woodworking. What are sawdust and chips? At first site, they are wastes. However, they are, no doubt, by-products. So, what is the difference? The difference lays in approach and attitude!

It is the way the management of particular sawmill handles with a pile of sawdust – as with wastes, or as with a raw material for further processing, which determines perspectives of further sawmill development. This was exactly the situation at Arkhangelsk LDK No 3, known as well as Sawmill 26. Wastes, stored up by former management, the new one consider as an opportunity. That is why, despite the fact that production complex requires modernization, the first decision was to construct a pellet mill as soon as possible. Besides, the price for sawlogs and sawn timber – final products of the sawmill – today is such, that sawmilling itself cannot be profitable enough without effective wastes processing and additional profit in this particular sector.

Not just beautiful words

“The soonest construction” are not just beautiful words and exorbitant plans, everything goes quickly and efficiently in practice. Thus, the idea re. pellet mill construction started up in April 2013 was realized already by the end of May in a signed contract on delivery of new machinery from leading world producers. Today the machinery complex is delivered in Arkhangelsk, with it being assembled at full speed. Assembling works are to be completed by the end of 2013, with the new pellet mill to be started up already in the beginning of 2014. At the first stage the mill capacity is to reach 100 th. ton of pellets per year.

From the viewpoint of the project implementation time, the project is really unique: it took just 7 month from signing the contract till commissioning works, incl. transportation and customs formalities – it is almost a record!


Time proved processing chain

In terms of machinery the new pellet mill will be rather standard – the basis will be formed by high quality machinery and advanced but proved technologies. The complex delivery will include 3 pellet presses by CPM (press speed being 4.5 ton of pellets per hour) and mill for dry raw material, 3 drum dryers by Hekotek, Bruks screen and band conveyor, as well as 2 silos for ready pellets by Cimbria (Denmark), storage capacity of each making up some 4000 ton (diameter of each silo 18 m, height – 25 m). Hekotek took the part of a general supplier and is responsible not only for machinery delivery, but for technical design which significantly affects the smooth work of the whole sawmill.

Too much at once – not always good

Pellet production is to be developed in two stages in order to determine the exact volume of existing raw materials. Unfortunately, the more efficient is the sawmill the more difficult it is to solve logistics tasks connected not so much with sales of products, as with the delivery of raw materials, i.e. where to get it and how to transport and moreover at a reasonable price.

It is hardly possible to say for sure what is more important – to design a new mill from the viewpoint of technology, to construct and start up it or to ensure uninterrupted work of the ready mill. In practice at proper approach these processes must be and actually are interdependent.

Properly developed plan

Initial project capacity making up 100 th. ton of pellets per year was chosen purposely. This capacity will be enough at the first stage to process the raw materials existing at the sawmill. The second stage is to include modernization of sawmilling facilities and to ensure new stock of raw materials for pellet production. It is quite obvious that processing capacities constructed today will not be enough then, that is why the new pellet mill is designed with regard to further increase of production capacity up to 220 thousand ton/year.

Such processing complex will allow the company not only to utilize the by-products properly, but to cost-effectively process the spoilage, as well as pulpwood that sure makes up a certain share in the wood harvested by Arkhangelsk LDK No 3.

Thus, steadily moving towards non waste production the sawmill reaches a brand new level. It is an obvious result of a modern approach to production management that allows awaiting stable and sound development in future.