Heinzel Group entrusts ANDRITZ with paper machine conversion for sustainable packaging paper production at Steyrermühl, Austria

ANDRITZ converts paper machine at Steyrermühl mill to produce kraft papers for sustainable flexible packaging © ANDRITZ

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  • Unique headbox and gapformer concept combined with shoe press achieves significant energy savings
  • Softnip calender technology results in premium paper surface qualities

International technology group ANDRITZ will convert the idled paper machine PM3 at Steyrermühl mill in Austria to produce kraft papers for sustainable flexible packaging. The machine previously produced graphic paper for UPM. The conversion project has been launched by the Heinzel Group, which will take over the Steyrermühl mill from UPM by January 1, 2024.

Once rebuilt by ANDRITZ, the paper machine (then PM6) will produce up to 150,000 tons of brown and white low-basis weight kraft paper per year to be sold under the Heinzel Group’s well-established StarKraft brand. The paper will be used for shopper bags, pouches, and other flexible packaging products.

Werner Hartmann, COO of Heinzel Pöls, says: “With this investment, StarKraft will become one of the world’s leading brands for bleached and unbleached kraft paper. ANDRITZ PrimeLine technology is already successfully operating at our Pöls and Laakirchen mills. The current rebuild by ANDRITZ will help us expand our product portfolio for sustainable packaging.”

PM6 at Steyrermühl will use an innovative ANDRITZ gap forming concept to produce bleached and unbleached calendered kraft paper grades. It is based on a unique headbox and shoe-blade gapformer combination. Together with an ANDRITZ PrimePress X shoe press and an upgrade of the existing steam and condensate system, it will achieve significant energy savings while producing high-quality end products.

The production of such kraft paper usually requires a Fourdrinier former. The PM6 gapformer rebuild will instead feature a new, unique concept that is based on the single-shoe setup of the PrimeForm TW: this fully adjustable shoe-blade gapformer (perfect for paper strength development and outstanding dewatering performance) enables crucial, grade-specific paper properties and will be combined with a PrimeFlow AT headbox with dilution control for excellent cross profiles. This concept was successfully proven in pilot trials during the sales phase.

A state-of-the-art PrimeCal Soft calender will replace an existing multinip calender to meet required optimum paper surface qualities in the future.

The PM6 will have a design speed of 1,500 m/min and a paper width at the reel of 6,300 mm. ANDRITZ’s scope of supply includes in addition upgrades of the stock preparation, approach flow, and broke handling systems as well as extensive upgrades of the automation systems (DCS, QCS, MMD), detail engineering packages, and mechanical erection. In addition, the existing steam and condensate system will be redesigned and upgraded, which will contribute to saving energy. Start-up of the rebuilt machine is scheduled for the beginning of 2024.

With its production companies Heinzel Pöls, Laakirchen Papier, Raubling Papier and Estonian Cell, the Austria-based Heinzel Group is one of the most important pulp and paper producers in Central and Eastern Europe. Heinzel and ANDRITZ look back on a long and successful business relationship. ANDRITZ converted the PM10 at Laakirchen and delivered Europe’s largest new MG paper machines (PM3 and PM2) to the Pöls mill.

International technology group ANDRITZ offers a broad portfolio of innovative plants, equipment, systems, services and digital solutions for a wide range of industries and end markets. Sustainability is an integral part of the company’s business strategy and corporate culture. With its extensive portfolio of sustainable products and solutions, ANDRITZ aims to make the greatest possible contribution to a sustainable future and help its customers achieve their sustainability goals. ANDRITZ is a global market leader in all four of its business areas – Pulp & Paper, Metals, Hydro and Separation. Technological leadership and global presence are cornerstones of the group’s strategy, which is focused on long-term profitable growth. The publicly listed group has around 29,700 employees and over 280 locations in more than 40 countries.

ANDRITZ Pulp & Paper provides sustainable technology, automation, and service solutions for the production of all types of pulp, paper, board and tissue. The technologies and services focus on increased production efficiency, lower overall operating costs as well as innovative decarbonization strategies and autonomous plant operation.

The product portfolio also includes boilers for power generation, flue gas cleaning systems, various nonwoven technologies, and panelboard (MDF) production systems. With waste-to-value recycling, shredding and energy solutions, waste and by-product streams from production are converted into valuable secondary raw materials as well as into sustainable resources for energy generation. State-of-the-art IIoT technologies as part of Metris digitalization solutions complete the comprehensive product offering.