iFIX, Enhance the Performance of iFIX, Historian
Predix HMI / SCADA
Głuchołaskie Zakłady Papiernicze [Głuchołazy Paper Company], with annual production of about 15,000 tons of paper, was founded more than 50 years ago. The company consisted of several business, including Głuchołaskie Zakłady Papiernicze Sp. z o.o., GZP Energia Cieplna Sp. z o.o. and Asko Papier Sp. z o.o., with annual sales of PLN 140 million; the monthly production volume based on five paper machines totals approximately 4,000 tons of unprocessed paper.
The businesses are located in three locations, with the headquarters in Głuchołazy, where recycled paper is manufactured for further processing. The Głuchołazy plant has four paper machines for the manufacture and processing of toilet paper, paper tubes, and cellulose wadding. Głuchołazy Paper Company had ambitious plans for dynamic growth and model management.
In order to meet the company’s goals, its plant maintenance managers defined a number of system requirements to do so, with the most important being:
- Supervision and control of a large and extensive production process in paper machines
- Inspection and control located in one facility (control room)
- Online data access both in real time and archived
- Online plant-wide, state-of-the-art reporting system with dynamic report configuration for every user
So, they turned to iFIX and Historian from GE Digital, part of the Predix HMI/SCADA suite. These solutions were implemented in the Głuchołazy and Niedomice paper mills.
iFIX and Historian were implemented by ELTOP s.c. Industrial Automation Systems. Staged implementation included individual production processes within the whole plant. In addition, the support and configuration of mobile and database solutions was provided by VIX Automation during the implementation phase.
The system is based on iFIX software. The following workstations are used:
• 3 x Server Station, iFIX 2.6 Runtime
• 3 x Server Station, iFIX 3.0 Runtime
• 3 x Server Station, iFIX 4.0 PLUS Runtime
Prior to implementation of the automated production control system, most production processes were controlled manually or semi-automatically. No advanced automation or SCADA systems were in place at the company. FIX 32 was the first software implemented in 1998 in the production process of the MP3 paper machine. Subsequently, when the other machines were upgraded, iFIX 2.6 and 3.0 were installed in MP1, MP2, and MP5 machines and in the paper pulp preparation process (iFIX 3.0).
A large investment was completed in the Niedomice Branch in 2007. Based on an existing paper machine, a new one was developed along with the production processes for the preparation and refining of paper pulp, water preparation, and sewage treatment. iFIX 4.0 was used as the SCADA system. Meanwhile, the heat plant in GZP [Głuchołaskie Zakłady Papiernicze (Głuchołazy Paper Company)] Głuchołazy was also upgraded based on iFIX 3.0 while the company sewage treatment plant was upgraded based on iFIX 4.0.
In 2009, the company made another major investment to upgrade the MP3 machine and have the Fix 32 system removed. This new, very extensive production process is controlled by iFIX 4.0. To complete the system, Historian was implemented in 2008. The successful individual implementation stages of these solutions fully met the expectations of the company’s leadership team.
This new system now supports complete visualization, control, and recording of archive data. The system has extensive alarm options and the whole manufacturing process is shown on multiple synoptic screens. Bidirectional communication (switching devices or whole process units on and off) is supported by each screen. Controller settings can also be adjusted. Historian generates clear reports and allows remote production process and machine parameter monitoring using the global network. This is particularly important when supervising the machine in the Niedomice Branch. In order for the company to continue to grow and scale, this system undergoes continuous expansion and upgrades.
Due to the current market requirements concerning product quality and economy efficiency in paper production, extensive SCADA systems must to be used in the manufacturing process. A reliable system is indispensable in production.
With the well-designed and highly reliable system that included user-defined needs (processing and production supervision in the plant) the number of workplaces could be optimized and, with the MP3 machine, largely contributed to increased efficiency exceeding the maximum design value.
iFIX and Historian helped ensure that:
- A minimum number of workplaces could be sustained at the paper machine, while still maintaining control over the production process that is safe for the employees and equipment
- Equipment operating ethos could be improved as the processes were run according to automatic algorithms
- The manufacturing process could be stabilized with direct effects on stable quality
- Continuous control of utility (power, heat, and water) consumption, largely contributing to production costs optimization of the paper machine
- The legitimacy of upgrades and changes in the equipment of paper machines could be verified
When developing a user's interface through iFIX, we can use a wide range of database blocks and an extensive object library. This allows us to develop applications quickly and easily. Experts can be used to animate objects and create scripts. We can modify them with only a minimum knowledge of VBA or develop our own solutions. The option of drawing layers provides a wealth of opportunities for the layout of synoptic screens. Historian efficiently collects and archives data not only from the GE Digital applications, but also from other sources. User-created applications based on SDK provide practically unlimited opportunities for data processing and entry. Also, extensive reports can be created based on archive and real data with Historian.
Janusz Paliga - Głuchołaskie Zakłady Papiernicze
iFIX allowed for supervising of manufacturing and maintenance processes of the machines, minimizing losses related to product change during manufacture while sustaining maximum productivity and product quality possible for the machine.
Through Historian, the company was able to start analyzing process indicators related to ISO 9001 based on the data collected and analyzing machine clothing (pulp felts) in terms of their time, energy, and throughput performance.
The software was also used to adjust technology and the ongoing control of new products implemented in Niedomice, located 350 km from the Głuchołazy plant, without the need of the employees responsible for technology in GZP Spółka z o.o. in Głuchołazy going to Niedomice.
Miroslaw Englot - Head of Production, Chief Technologist, Głuchołaskie Zakłady Papiernicze Spółka z o.o