PrimeLineTIAC: a birthplace for new products and processes for the tissue industry

ANDRITZ solicited input from many of the world’s leading tissue producers before designing and building its new PrimeLineTIAC – Tissue Innovation and Applications Center in Austria. The Center is the only in the world to offer various machine configurations for the production of conventional, textured, and structured tissue. We take a tour of the new Center to gain insight into the goals of the project, which represents a sizable investment by ANDRITZ.

author: TissueMAG

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Arriving at the front entrance to the new PrimeLineTIAC -Tissue Innovation and Application Center in Graz, Austria, the first impression is that this is no ordinary pilot plant. Once inside, that impression is confirmed. “The PrimeLineTIAC is undoubtedly unique in the world,” says Klaus Gissing, Director Tissue Innovation and Application Center, as he greets us. “We tried to incorporate as many of the ‘wishlist’ items from our most demanding and forward-thinking customers and turn these wishes into reality. Come inside and I will be happy to show you around”.


A sophisticated space for the tissue community

Joining Gissing on the tour is Thomas Scherb, Director of Sales Tissue South America. “The PrimeLineTIAC started with a vision,” Scherb says. “Not only to be the world’s most modern pilot plant, but also to become a sophisticated space for the tissue community – customers, suppliers, universities, and R&D institutes – to collaborate and implement the tissue solutions of tomorrow.”

 PrimeLineTIAC will enable our customers and us to develop the right tissue product together for their customers


PrimeLineTIAC – Tissue Innovation and Application Center, Graz, Austria.

Touring PrimeLineTIAC

It is envisioned that PrimeLineTIAC will be a “birthplace of new products and processes with unique value” according to Gissing. “Being able to effectively demonstrate a new idea or new product at pilot scale gives a tissue producer confidence to move to commercial scale,” he says.  PrimeLineTIAC allows customers and developers to, for example, optimize fibers and furnish for a specific product, increase dryness, and reduce energy consumption,” Scherb says. “The impact of variables such as stock preparation, chemicals, vacuum, machine clothing, pressing, hot air, and steam can all be measured and evaluated.”

These extensive capabilities go a long way toward ensuring a tissue producer that the production processes and machine configuration are compatible with the raw materials sed, and that the end products will fully meet their customers’ expectations.
ANDRITZ experts from R&D, stock preparation, machine design, engineering, automation, and pumps are available for collaboration and discussion with our customers´ own team of specialists.


Fully equipped from stock to reel

Stock preparation and approach flow.
Various types of pulp can be tested and processed at the Tissue Innovation and Application Center, making it ideal not only for tissue producers, but also for pulp manufacturers and chemical suppliers who market to tissue producers. The stock preparation line processes short and long fibers separately, making it easier to experiment with fiber development and even blend fibers according to the individual needs of every customer or project.

One machine, various configurations.
The pilot tissue machine is unlike any other in the world, offering the utmost flexibility:
Dry-creped tissue can be produced on a vertical CrescentFormer with either a suction roll or shoe press (the PrimePress XT Evo, the latest shoe press technology available). Textured tissue can be produced by a new, patented press arrangement. For structured tissue, wet molding creates a 3D arrangement of the fibers that is preserved by means of Through-Air Drying (TAD), and Advanced TAD. The machine can be configured with different TAD arrangements to investigate impacts on energy consumption.

Custom-tailored pump solutions.
The pumps convey stock suspensions with the required consistencies in all production stages.
They are equipped with sensors to obtain detailed measurements and provide precise pump control and regulating.

Metris PrimeControl E.
The level of automation in the Tissue Innovation and Application Center is very high. The ANDRITZ PrimeControl hardware and software provides utmost flexibility in monitoring and controlling various machine configurations, as well as the stock preparation systems.

A special condition monitoring function helps identify quality issues by using intelligent detection of impending faults or malfunctions in machine parts. Energy and resource efficiency integrated into the control system allow detection and reporting of immediate power requirements to help optimize energy consumption.

The pilot tissue machine features various different configurations for the production of conventional, textured, and structured tissue.

Laboratories confirm findings

The Tissue Innovation and Application Center houses two labs to analyze the chemical and physical processes in use. Stock preparation testing includes analysis of strength, optical qualities and physical fiber characteristics. The tissue machine testing includes basis weight, caliper, tensile, formation, and softness (panel method). At the conclusion of the trials, ANDRITZ prepares a comprehensive report of trial results. And of course, they ensure full confidentiality in the handling of customer names, any tests and their results.


Strong partners

For a project of this magnitude, ANDRITZ collaborated with several key partners – such as  Albany International Corp., Danfoss Drives, IBS Paper PerformanceGroup, Nash, and Solenis – who contributed to the pilot plant. In addition, PrimeLineTIAC is sponsored by FFG as part of R&D infrastructure promotion.


Klaus Gissing,
ANDRITZ Director Tissue Innovation and Application Center.
Thomas Scherb,
ANDRITZ Director of Sales Tissue South America.
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