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28 January 2011

WEG high efficiency motors are providing up to 30% savings in energy on the operation of the largest and most sophisticated paper making machine in the world for producing high quality paper. The machine is part of a €550 million investment undertaken by the Portucel-Soporcel Group at its industrial complex in Setúbal, Portugal: the largest paper making complex in the world.

In addition to being the leading company in Portugal in the pulp and paper sector, the Portucel-Soporcel Group is also a major force in the global paper pulp market, with more than 92% of its total sales exported to over 50 countries worldwide. With its most recent investments in a new factory and paper making machine, the Group is looking to increase its international business further, to more than 1.2 billion euros in 2010.

Central to Portucel-Soporcel’s plan for international growth is the largest and most sophisticated paper making machine in the world. The new machine has a width of 11.1 metres and produces approximately 500,000 tonnes per year of top quality non- coated paper (UWF). This figure equates to 1900 tonnes of paper per day, or 80- tonnes per hour. In terms of speed, the machine has the capacity to process 1,800- metres per minute, the equivalent of 30- metres of paper per second. These performance figures make the machine pre-eminent in terms of productivity and efficiency for the production of paper for office supplies and for use in graphic reproduction.

The challenges of building the new factory and of building and installing the new machine were met by a host of top engineering companies in their respective fields. Among them, WEG was selected to supply the electric motors that are incorporated into the new paper producing machine. The fact that WEG operates the only manufacturing plant for electric motors in Portugal, and has an extensive industrial support platform for Europe were major factors in the choice of the company as the motor supplier for the project. The scope of WEG’s supply was 650 Low Voltage W21 motors and 16 Medium Voltage 6 kV motors, with capacities of between 0.37 kW and 2,800 kW.

The main factor in selecting WEG for the project was the proven record of the company in manufacturing efficient, reliable and robust electrical motors that deliver extremely low whole-life costs and high OEE. WEGeuro also had available testing facilities that made it possible to carry out final tests and testing during manufacture.

“Having WEGeuro as a partner in this project, with a factory in Portugal, ensures closeness between supplier and client and guarantees support in real time, which is always important,” said Antonio Duarte Managing Director of WEGeuro. “In addition, as a leading motor supplier, we are aware of the demands and the realities of the market, so the solution that we presented was the most competitive in technical and economic terms.”

WEGeuro was the ideal choice as motor/drive supplier for the Setúbal project, not only for its local manufacture and support, but also because of the company’s experience as a major solutions provider to the global Pulp & Paper sector. This experience, extending to proven automation packages that combine sophisticated technology products, applications know-how and full control and monitoring software, meant that WEGeuro engineers fully understood the demands of the high speed, high throughput Setúbal ‘About the Future’ operation, and were able to specify products that exactly met the user’s requirements.

The processing functions in the new Setúbal factory are controlled by a dedicated DCS – Distributed Control System. The system uses the most modern communication methods, including control of motors and instrumentation using the widely employed Profibus fieldbus network. Control of the electrical system within the factory is achieved via a SCADA system, the most up-to-date of its type for this type of monitoring and control.

The high levels of control and monitoring attained in the new Setúbal ‘About The Future’ factory are achieved with much improved levels of energy efficiency compared to the Group’s previous projects. This is due to the large number (650) of WEG W21 high efficiency motors used on the new paper making machine.

In addition to energy saving, the WEG motors are also playing a major role in achieving maximum up-time at the paper making facility. One of the most critical aspects in paper production is continuity of operation; this can be achieved only with a reliable and robust information system that is fully integrated and capable of monitoring factory operations and interacting in real time with the various items of manufacturing equipment. In this area, the WEG W21 range of motors offers a high degree of reliability and low maintenance, contributing substantially to reducing maintenance costs.

“The motors fully satisfy our usage requirements, and up to now there have been no problems to report,” said Carlos Pinto. “They were delivered on time and met our special requirements in terms of special paint finish and oversized bearings. We were also impressed with the inverter- duty coils in the W21 motors that allow operation with frequency variation in motors from 45 KW.

WEG also did the job for us on the largest motors supplied, 2,800kW Medium Voltage machines. These have proved to be the best choice for driving the vacuum pumps in the paper making process. They have solved the problem of pump start-up, which previously was “very difficult”, and are ensuring correct operation of what is one of the most important operations in the paper producing process.”

“At the completion of this project, the result could not be more positive,” said Antonio Duarte. “WEG has fulfilled its agreement in all aspects associated with the implementation of this project, and the customer is benefiting from reduced cost operation and the excellent reliability for which WEG products are known.”

For further information, please contact Marek Lukaszczyk:

WEG Electric Motors (UK) Ltd, 28/29 Walkers Road, Manorside Industrial Estate, North Moons Moat, Redditch, Worcs. B98 9HE Tel: +44(0)1527 596748 Fax: +44(0)1527 68726  Email:  Web: are not responsible for the content of submitted or externally produced articles and images.
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