OPC Makes Better Paper

Feb. 1, 2005
A leading forest industry company uses OPC to communicate between the control system and the mill information system in the production of high-gloss paper.

Stora Enso, with head offices in Helsinki, Finland and Stockholm, Sweden, ranks among the world’s leading forest industry companies. In its paper, packaging and forest products divisions, Stora Enso manufactures press and catalog papers, high gloss papers, packaging boards and wood products, holding a leading position in these product segments. In 2003, Stora Enso generated a total turnover of EUR 12.2 billion (about USD 15.8 billion). The company employs about 44,000 members of staff in more than 40 countries on five continents and has a production capacity of 15.7 million tons of paper and board as well as 7.4 million cubic meters of sawn wood products.

The Reisholz Mill in Germany produces high gloss magazine papers for the publication paper business segment. During the introduction of a new product with increased quality, the existing assets have been equipped with new measurement and control technology. To ensure a smoother production flow and improved maintainability and to guarantee continuous communication among all measurement and control systems, the decision has been made for the open communication standard OPC as the common interface.

OPC is used both for the communication between the measurement and control systems and the communication with the Mill Information System. Already during the acceptance of bids, OPC support has been required from all system suppliers. Using OPC, all systems from different vendors can exchange data without gateways or specific protocol modifications.

Clear rules for standards

To achieve a secure and uninterrupted production, good asset maintainability and fast trouble shooting, the Reisholz Mill attaches great value to the consistent use of standards and secure technologies. Therefore Profibus, Ethernet and OPC are used in the production automation. The communication between the field level and the automation level is performed using the approved Profibus. The different automation segments are networked via Ethernet. All communication between the automation components and the control technology is done via OPC.

The various systems used in the Reisholz Mill include:

• Airtech and Glosstech from V.I.B.

• DaVinci from Honeywell

• Damatic from Metso

• DeltaV from Emerson, and

• MOPS from Tieto Enator.

Not all systems provide an OPC server interface; some have an OPC client interface instead. These systems cannot communicate with the quality management system, which provides an OPC client interface. A client-to-client gateway is required. Stora Enso opted for 4CONTROL from Softing AG, Germany, a leading provider of OPC toolkits, servers and tools. Based on the worldwide-approved Softing OPC toolkits, 4CONTROL provides both an integrated OPC server and OPC client. Data from third party systems can be accessed by 4CONTROL via its OPC client or OPC server interface and transferred to the QM system through its OPC server interface.

With 4CONTROL, the huge amount of data can be reduced and is easier to manage.

All the data from about 15,000 online data points in different measurement and control systems is collected by 4CONTROL, preprocessed and converted into data formats, to be integrated by the QM system. Within 4CONTROL, numerous types of analyses can be run and data structures from the subordinate systems can be adapted for the QM system’s database. In that way, 4CONTROL provides the QM system with the right data in the right format and structure and reduces the amount of data.

Using 4CONTROL and OPC technology from Softing, the time and costs for the system integration could be reduced drastically in the Reisholz Mill.

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