Metsä Fibre, a division of the international Metsä Group, is set to become the world’s largest producer and seller of softwood pulp with the recent opening of its new bioproduct mill in Äänekoski, Finland. With an annual production capacity of 1.3 million tonnes of pulp, as well as other bioproducts such as tall oil and turpentine, this next-generation bioproduct mill signals a new era – and new technological platforms – for the forestry industry.

Web Photo Matrox Graphics Metsa Fibre Video Wall

Video wall technology

The Äänekoski bioproduct mill makes use of leading-edge automation and digitised monitoring systems for its high-speed production lines for woodcutting, washing and more. In order to monitor its production operations comprehensively, Metsä Fibre sought a state-of-the-art video wall. On the recommendation of one of its main suppliers, ANDRITZ Oy, Metsä Fibre contacted local systems integrator, Elkome Systems, to manage the video wall installation.

Elkome Systems worked with Matrox Graphics, a company headquartered in Montreal, Canada, to implement the new video wall solution in the Äänekoski plant. For Metsä Fibre the video wall allows individual control room operators to function effectively and supports collaborative work by the team, by displaying a lot of crucial process control information for everyone to visualise at the same time.

In each shift, two operators in the control room monitor three high-speed line operations where wood is cut into smaller pieces. Part of the process control surveillance system has 36 Bosch IP video cameras permanently focused on the log-cutting operations. These feed into a Bosch video server on-site. The operators can switch to any of the inputs from the 36 cameras, which need to be displayed on a video wall. The video wall is key to the mill’s operations as it enables process control through continuous monitoring, essential to the production line functioning.

Data from automated quality inspection systems that check the pulp for the presence of metal, stones and other foreign materials (even bullets stuck to the wood from hunting) are also included on the video wall, as Metsä Fibre requested.

All lined up

With all Metsa Fibre’s capture and display requirements, Elkome Systems decided on a huge 6,5 metre wide, 12x1 video wall, driven with multi-channel capture capabilities.

Housed in a single 4U Advantech video wall controller are three Matrox Mura IPX cards which can each capture up to four 4K inputs and encode/decode multiple 4K streams. The Mura IPX cards capture the outputs of the Bosch video server as well as the automation systems via four and six inputs respectively – all in full HD (1920 x 1080p60) resolution – so operators can easily pull up monitoring data points on the wall. In the same high-density, low-footprint system are two Matrox C680 graphics cards that power the 12 pivoted displays where multiple video sources are viewed simultaneously.

Initial setup and other administrative tasks are done with the robust Matrox MuraControl software. For day-to-day operations, an easy-to-use software that contains readymade setups – customised by Elkome for Metsä Fibre – is used.

Part of the video wall is dedicated to displaying the alarm lists from the 24/7 surveillance of the production control systems. Alarms are typically triggered when the received control system values do not fall within the expected value thresholds (for example, the temperature is too low or high). Should the alarm go off, the operators can see a complete picture of the issue at hand and promptly take appropriate action, including stopping the process if necessary. The surveillance operators can share the display with other decision makers as well.

Timo Myllylä, product manager at Elkome Systems says, “Our video wall implementation for Metsä Fibre using Matrox products has been very well received by the client. With the video wall being used around-the-clock, Metsä Fibre is more than pleased with its reliable and sound performance.”

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