Valmet has delivered the world’s first fully virtual paper mill to Mondi’s new production line at the Mondi mill in Ružomberok, Slovakia. Prior to the start-up of the Valmet-supplied Old Corrugated Container (OCC) line, the stock preparation and the containerboard machine, the new machinery’s virtual design twin is being used to train operators and other personnel.
Valmet’s delivery of the Old Corrugated Container (OCC) and OptiConcept M containerboard making lines to Mondi’s Ružomberok mill was announced in 2018.
Using virtual reality and controllers, the users enter a 360° learning environment, move freely in a 3D virtual setting and interact with simulated machinery to learn more about the process and the equipment. The included training modules are lifelike training scenarios, created especially for the maintenance actions in forming and press sections.
As a result, the users learn in the best possible way — through personal experience — which significantly improves learning retention, job performance, and workplace safety.
“It has been really eye-opening to be able to use the virtual mill before the actual start-up. The people who will be working at the board making line feel more ready and assured for the start-up and operating phase. I was personally participating in our paper machine (PM18) rebuild and start-up in 2003. At that time, we were positively surprised at Valmet DNA machine control system. And now we can ‘work’ at a virtual PM. The operators know exactly how to install PM clothing, for example. I strongly believe the start-up and operator´s knowledge will be better now than without the virtual mill,” says Ľubomír Líška from Mondi SCP Ružomberok.
“This training platform is the first of its kind as it contains the whole mill in a virtual reality. Valmet wants to ensure that the customers get the most out of their equipment, systems and processes. We are constantly looking for ways to make knowledge transfer more efficient, as the success of a board and paper producer is not only dependent on the quality of the technology they use but also the level of competence of their employees,” says Katriina Geijer, Senior Manager, Customer Training at Valmet.
Virtual mill is a training simulator and a part of Valmet’s industrial internet and Learning services offerings, and more closely extended reality learning.
The Valmet-supplied virtual mill is a digital design twin of the customer’s machinery and surrounding facilities. It can be used for training operators and maintenance workers before both the initial start-up and major shutdowns.
Mondi SCP located in Ružomberok is part of Mondi, a leading global packaging and paper group, employing around 26,000 people across more than 30 countries. It is the biggest integrated pulp and paper mill in the Slovak republic with a production capacity of 560,000 tonnes of uncoated paper, 66,000 tonnes of packaging paper and 100,000 tonnes of dried market pulp. The latest investment in a new containerboard machine with production capacity of 300,000 tonnes per annum will significantly increase the product offering for sustainable packaging solutions used for corrugated packaging applications, in addition to an already existing strong base of uncoated fine paper products.