University of Oulu

Analysis and management of wood room

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Author: Isokangas, Ari1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Technology, Department of Process and Environmental Engineering
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: 2010
Publish Date: 2010-08-10
Thesis type: Doctoral Dissertation
Defence Note: Academic dissertation to be presented with the assent of the Faculty of Technology of the University of Oulu for public defence in Kuusamonsali (Auditorium YB210), Linnanmaa, on 20 August 2010, at 12 noon
Reviewer: Research Director Jari Käyhkö
Professor Risto Ritala


The objective of this work was to study the effect of adjustable process parameters on wood loss and bark removal in tumble drum debarking. The effect of capacity on the size distribution of the chips was studied in order to determine the optimal capacity for both the debarking and chipping sub-processes. The final aim was to propose a control strategy to optimise the processes by adapting their parameters according to the quality of the raw material.

When the research started, earlier automation systems had focused on keeping the process alive, and economic values such as wood loss were not considered important. The process is usually controlled manually and shifts have different ways to manage it, which are based on trial and error. Bark removal in chemical pulp mills is usually higher than the values recommended in the literature, which in turn causes log breaking in the drum and increases wood loss. Even a small reduction in wood loss could have a substantial financial outcome. The lack of raw materials some time ago and the recession nowadays have highlighted the importance of more efficient log use.

Data survey techniques were employed to reveal the interactions between drum variables from noisy measurements. Wood room data were analysed by modelling and deriving conclusions from the resulting parameters. In addition, log breaking and the size distribution of the chips were analysed under different process conditions. A pilot-scale drum was used to study residence time and the mechanical abrasion of logs.

The results of this work indicated that the ratio of the volume of logs in the drum to capacity determines the residence time of the logs in the drum. Other variables influence the volume of logs in the drum, which together with capacity determine the residence time of logs in the drum, which affects wood loss and bark removal. The effect of capacity on the size distribution of the chips was not unambiguous, however, and it was therefore recommended to operate wood room at high capacity, because this reduces wood loss and increases annual production. The proposed control strategy adapts the residence time of logs in the drum to the quality of the debarked raw material by controlling the position of the closing gate. In addition, the control strategy adjusts the rotating speed of the drum using an open loop control.

The results can be used to optimise the wood room process parameters. If the problem in wood room is excessive debarking, the residence time of the logs can be reduced and the rotating speed of the drum lowered. In this way the logs will be damaged less and wood loss will be reduced. Bark removal requirements in mechanical pulp mills are high, and the process parameters can be adapted to avoid problems in the subsequent processes due to excessive bark.

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Series: Acta Universitatis Ouluensis. C, Technica
ISSN-E: 1796-2226
ISBN: 978-951-42-6261-6
ISBN Print: 978-951-42-6260-9
Issue: 363
Copyright information: © University of Oulu, 2010. This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.