First hybrid electric heating system for Yankee hood in tissue industry started up

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Andritz was selected by tissue producer Softys Peru as technology partner for a completely new kind of hybrid Yankee hood heating system. It is the industry’s first system that allows for a flexible combination of electric and natural gas heating. Installation and start-up of this innovative technology at Softys’s mill in Lima, was successfully completed in December 2023.

The system uses a patented air mixing plenum that allows to combine heat sources depending on the mill’s specific needs. The customer can run the system either in 1) electric heating mode, using only the electric heater assembly, or 2) natural gas heating mode, using the burner, or 3) hybrid mode, with a freely adjustable portion of electric and natural gas heating. This provides Softys with maximum flexibility in choosing heat sources with a view to emissions reduction and energy cost optimization.

The system has been installed in a tissue machine with a design speed up to 2,000 m/min and a paper width of 2.8 m. It is the result of a joint R&D project between Softys and Andritz.

Reinaldo Uribe, Director of Processes and Corporate Projects at Softys, and inventor of the system, explains: “We invited Andritz as a partner to develop this R&D project as part of our ESG strategy to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from our tissue machines in Latin American, and we are happy to see that our efforts are now contributing to more sustainable mill operations. In George Nowakowski I found the perfect counterpart to implement this project – from conjoint R&D works, up to the successful patent application and start-up”. George Nowakowski, Vice President Tissue Drying America, and inventor of the system from Andritz side, adds: “Collaborating with a partner like Softys gives us the great opportunity to use our mutual know-how in order to swiftly develop, extensively test and efficiently implement valuable innovations that are beneficial both for the environment and operational efficiency”.

Softys, part of the CMPC group, is one of South America’s largest tissue producers. The mill in Lima has an annual production capacity of approx. 100,000 tons of tissue.