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Ahlstrom-Munksjö and Via Separations partner with the U.S. on energy pilot

Ahlstrom-Munksjo Oyj - The Ahlstrom-Munksjö Mosinee plant in Wisconsin is teaming up with Via Separations to pilot a cutting edge energy efficiency project in conjunction with the U.S. energy department.

The trial is validating Via Separations’ black liquor concentration system, which is driven by an innovation in membrane material and system design. The new system will reduce energy requirements for this process, increase mill throughput, and increase production of co-products used as a heating source for the plant.

“In partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) industrial technology validation program and Ahlstrom-Munksjö, Via Separations is proud to support this trial. We can reduce the resource requirement per unit of pulp produced by implementing a step-change process intensification,” said Shreya Dave, CEO of Via Separations. “Together, we are implementing innovative, first-of-their kind filtration systems to enhance efficiency, reduce energy expenditures, and drive production throughput.” On a commercial scale, the technology has the potential to provide a 64% decrease in energy demand in the evaporator process.

“Our Wisconsin plants have been involved with the DOE’s Better Plants program for many years, and this new project is yet another example of our commitment to continuous innovation and sustainability,” said Steve Myers, vice president of operations for Ahlstrom-Munksjö’s Wisconsin facilities. “By integrating this new technology we hope to set an example for further energy consumption research within the paper industry.”

“To achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, we must rapidly scale-up the development and deployment of clean-energy technologies by American manufacturers,” said Kelly Speakes-Backman, acting assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy. “By bringing these emerging technologies out of the laboratory and onto the factory floor, DOE’s industrial technology validation program moves us one step closer to commercializing the innovations that will make our clean energy future possible.”

The trial began at the Mosinee, Wisconsin plant in July and the teams will continue to validate results and will report findings through the DOE.



September /October 2021