Microline: an Italo-Portuguese partnership for the installation of a roll and tissue product packaging plant

Microline: an Italo-Portuguese partnership for the installation of a roll and tissue product packaging plant

Renova, a Portuguese company operating in the paper product manufacturing and marketing sector, turns to Italian automation and packaging systems design specialist Microline to develop a complete roll conveyance, flow wrapping and case packing system. Installed at the headquarters of the Portuguese company, the line boasts a high level of productivity and great flexibility. The project is the latest step of a partnership between the companies established almost twenty years ago.

The protagonists: two European leaders whose work is inspired by innovation

With more than a century’s experience in the paper product sector behind it, Renova has a product line-up that includes toilet paper, tissues, wipes, paper towels for household and industrial use, and hospital paper rolls, to name but a few. The company has always had an extremely dynamic market approach, thinking outside the box and introducing highly innovative product lines. For example, it launched the first black toilet roll in history, breaking the “unthinkable” colours taboo. Today, many Renova products are available in different colours and everything about them, including their packaging, stands out for its originality, quality and user-friendliness. The company also became one of the first sector businesses to move towards sustainability, when it launched “Ecolabel” products made from 100% recycled paper, at the turn of the century. Renova is now present with its products in all five continents, serving more than 70 countries worldwide.

Based near Bologna, in the heart of Italy’s Packaging Valley, Microline has twenty years’ experience in the design and marketing of automatic packaging machines. The company’s main areas of expertise are the Tissue, Paper and Non-woven sectors. It has devised solutions offering superlative versatility, safety and efficiency to meet many diverse needs. Modularity is undoubtedly the concept that sets Microline products apart. Its machines consist of a standard model that can be customised with the simple addition of modules or dedicated options. The modular solutions – for shrink-wrappers, flow wrappers and horizontal and vertical case packers for paper rolls, paper tissues, boxes, napkins and interfolded products, connection, switching and collation systems and palletisers – in fact guarantee a specific answer for every type of product and need.

The partnership: from technical consultancy to the installation of complete lines

Although Microline products were first installed on Renova premises in 2007, from a design perspective the partnership between the two countries is already two decades old. Over the years, 16 machines have been installed in the Portuguese factories, in addition to a number of auxiliary systems such as conveyor belts, unscramblers and orienters. The relationship between the two companies has always been characterised by a strong sense of cooperation, which typically covers the entire course of a project, from the preliminary design phase to the installation of the machines and after sales support and assistance.

A complete line characterised by performance and functionality

The most recent installation in Renova’s factories was carried out at the start of this year and regarded a line consisting in a Fast Wrap 1250 bundler – Microline’s top model – and a ROM600Maxi case packer. The line also includes a stacker, an upender, a summator and a divider, as well as a complete product handling system, all designed and manufactured by Microline. The line is characterised by high performance and flexibility: in addition to the various product sorting and machine use options, the individual units are able to handle a variety of different collation patterns. The conveyors are provided with a synoptic supervision system for the control and optimisation of the entire line.

Not just hardware: the brain behind the line

An important part of the job order consisted in the installation of a synoptic panel capable of operating as the management system of the entire plant. Through its various functions, this cutting-edge system is able to provide real-time line operation reports, whilst simultaneously permitting the remote adjustment of parameters such as the production speed of the individual machines. Most importantly, the synoptic panel is able to carry out line operation analyses, autonomously aligning the various functions to save energy and safeguard maintenance, and consequently optimise productive efficiency. When necessary, the system also facilitates remote intervention by Microline’s specialised personnel, who are able to work on all the devices on the line from a single area. All machines manufactured by Microline are also provided with a self-diagnosis system making it possible to notify maintenance personnel when the various routine maintenance operations are due.

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