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Pulp and paper mills make paper from both virgin raw material and wastepaper. In the mills
analyzed, virgin raw material is transformed into pulp in a Kraft pulp mill, which is
comprised of a pulp plant, a bleach plant and chemical recovery plant, and wastepaper is
transformed into pulp in a hydrapulping and secondary fiber processing plant. Utilities and
services (such as, water, steam, power, etc.) required by the core processes of the mill are
supplied by the utilities and services section of the mill, which is mainly comprised of a
boiler house or a co-generation plant, and one or more water treatment plants.
On the basis of the environmental analysis carried out for five large-scale pulp and paper
mills, process maps were developed for the processes of pulp and paper industry (Kraft
pulping, Kraft pulp bleaching, hydrapulping and secondary fiber processing, paper
machine, and utilities and services). These maps included the following two components:
 Process and material flow diagrams
 Verbal description of the operations and activities (representing the normal
operating conditions, abnormal operating conditions and realistic and potential
emergency operating conditions) of each of the processes from the environmental
The process maps developed are given in the first five sections of Chapter-4.
Through critically examining the developed process maps, in the light of applicable legal
environmental requirements, environmental aspects of the pulp and paper industry were
identified and the identified aspects are given in Section-6 of this chapter.

4.1.1 Overview
Kraft pulping process involves cooking of prepared raw materials (wood chips, grasses,
wheat straw, bagasse, etc.) with cooking chemicals (pulping chemicals), and processing
(blowing, washing, screening and cleaning) the cooked material into unbleached pulp.
Blowing of cooked material involves release of hot vapours. Heat is recovered from these
vapours through using a blow heat recovery system. Washing of the cooked material
(blown pulp) generates black liquor, which contains spent cooking chemicals and
solubilized constituents (mostly non-cellulosic organic constituents) of the raw material
being cooked. Cooking chemicals and energy are recovered through concentrating and
burning the liquor and causticizing resultant smelt (green liquor), in a chemical recovery
plant. Recovered cooked chemicals are used in pulping in the form of white liquor.
Storage, handling and preparation of raw materials, despite being same for different pulping
processes, has also been included under the Kraft pulping process for convenience. Overall
Kraft pulping process, including storage, handling and preparation of raw materials, and
Kraft liquor cycle, is schematically shown in Figure-4.1.1.
Three of the five mills analyzed (Alpha Pulp Mill, Beta Pulp and Paper Mill and Gamma
Pulp and Paper Mill) are employing the Kraft pulping process. All the three mills have
chemical recovery plants. Kraft pulping process of the Alpha Pulp Mill includes a pre-
hydrolysis step for facilitating manufacture of rayon grade pulp.

4.1.2 Storage, Handling and Preparation of Raw materials for

Operations and activities associated with the storage, handling and preparation of raw
materials for pulping are schematically shown in Figure-4.1.2.
Receipt, handling, storage and preparation of raw materials for pulping may include the
following operations/activities:
• Transportation and handling
• Storage
• Debarking
• Washing and winnowing
• Chipping or crushing and cutting
• Screening of chips Transportation and handling

Raw materials are transported to the mill site by road, rail, or waterways. Within the mill
premises, fork lifters, tractors, trolleys, or trippers and conveyors may be used for handling
the raw materials. These operations may involve use of fuel oils and electrical energy, and
may be associated with air pollution and noise pollution problems. Spillage of material may
also be a problem. Storage
Raw material is usually stored in open space. Ground barrier of concrete or asphalt is often
provided underneath the stored raw material for reducing dirt contamination and/or
inhibiting attack by termites and other ground organisms. Storage is associated with fire
hazard. About 1% of the wood stored is usually lost in storage per month to respiration,
thermal degradation, chemical reactions and microbial activity. For minimizing the storage
losses, chemical sprays (chip preservative treatment) are often used. Depending on the raw
material stored and chemical sprays used, drainage water from the raw-material storage
yard may require treatment. Bulky raw materials, such as bagasse (which contain residual
sugars), are often stored under water. Such storage may generate wastewater, which may
require treatment prior to disposal. Raw materials (specially wood chips) are often stored in
enclosed or built areas, and storage bins and silos. Debarking
Debarking is required when wood is used as raw material. Either a wet operation, or a dry
operation, may be employed for wood debarking. This operation produces bark as solid
waste (4 to 5% of the wood debarked). Wet debarking involves use of water and generation
of wastewater. Mechanical debarking involves use of electrical energy. Dry debarking can
cause air pollution and noise pollution problems. Debarking operation may not always be
carried out within the mill premises. Washing and winnowing

Washing is a wet process, while winnowing is a dry process. These are meant for the
removal of sand, soil and debris from the raw materials. These processes are also often used
for removing pith from the raw materials like bagasse and grasses. Washing involves use of
water and generation of wastewater, which is rich in grit. Winnowing is associated with air
pollution and noise pollution problems. In case of wood based refiner pulping process, even
wood chips may require washing for the removal of sand, grit and other foreign materials
prior to loading to the digester. Chipping or crushing and cutting

Conversion of woody raw material into chips is an electrical energy intensive process, and
it is associated with both air pollution and noise pollution problems. Chipping operations
are also associated with fire hazards. Blunt and broken blades of chippers etc., may
contribute to the scrap generated by the mill. Crushing and cutting operations may be
needed for the raw materials like bamboo. Screening of chips

Chipping leads to the generation of chips of various sizes. Only the right size chips are to
be loaded to the digester. Through screening (on vibratory screens), oversize and under-size
chips are segregated. Over-size chips are re-chipped and recycled, while the undersize chips
are discarded as wood dust. Screening is associated with air pollution and noise pollution

4.1.3 Kraft Pulping and Pulp Processing

Kraft pulping process can be considered to include the following activities/operations:
• Digester loading
• Pre-hydrolysis
• Cooking
• Blowing
• Blow heat recovery
Processing of the Kraft pulp can be considered to include the following activities/
• Screening
• Washing
• Cleaning
• Thickening Pulping
Kraft pulping, in addition to the above-mentioned activities and operations, also includes a
blow heat recovery system, which produces hot water from the blow tank vapours. All the
three mills analyzed are employing batch Kraft pulping process. Except in the old pulp unit
of the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, pulping is done through indirect heating of the digester
contents in an external pre-heater with saturated medium pressure steam. Direct steam
injection pulping is practiced only in the old pulp unit of the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill. loading
Loading refers to the packing of the digester with the prepared raw material (often with the
help of steam), while purging out air and other non-condensable gases, the addition of
cooking chemicals (sodium hydroxide and sodium sulfide) in the form of white liquor, and
the adjustment of wood to liquor ratio in the digester (usually with weak black liquor,
If cooking involves a pre-hydrolysis step, then loading of white liquor is delayed till pre-
hydrolysis is over. Loading of the digester for pre-hydrolysis may in fact include loading of
the prepared raw material and hot water or hot foul condensate.
Pre-hydrolysis is an optional operation. It is usually employed when rayon grade pulp is
produced and/or when pentasons removal is desired. Pre-hydrolysis involves cooking of
raw material in water (cooking medium) at elevated temperature (155 to 170°C) and
draining out the cooking medium as pre-hydrolysate liquor (PH liquor). After loading, the
digester contents are heated (by circulating the cooking medium through an external heat
exchanger, pre-heater, wherein it is indirectly heated by MP steam) to gradually increase
temperature to desired level and maintained at that temperature for a fixed duration. Steam
condensate is generated at the pre-heater and it can still be used for low temperature heating
purposes. Further, this condensate, if not contaminated, can be recycled and reused as
boiler feed water. For avoiding build up of false pressure, non-condensable gases
accumulated in the digester are vented into the atmosphere continuously and/or
intermittently. These vented gases may be rich in volatile organic compounds.
For draining out the cooking medium, supply of MP steam to the pre-heater and circulation
of the medium through the pre-heater are stopped, and the digester vent is opened for
allowing escape of relief gases and drop of digester content’s pressure to a desired value.
After this, the medium is drained out as PH liquor through a screen plate. Frequently, pre-
hydrolysed material of the digester is washed in hot water and the wash water is drained out
as pre-hydrolysate wash liquor (PH wash liquor). PH liquor is acidic and hot, and it is rich
in organic matter. Characteristics of PH liquor sampled from Alpha Pulp Mill are given in
Table-4.1.1. PH liquor has a tendency to clog pipelines through crust formation. Cooking
If the loaded raw-material is pre-hydrolyzed first, after draining out the PH liquor, the
digester contents are added with white liquor and wood to liquor ratio is suitably adjusted,
usually, with weak black liquor (WBL), which is obtained from brown stock washing of the
pulp processing section. Cooking involves raising the temperature of digester contents to
155-170°C by circulating the cooking medium through pre-heater and indirectly heating it
with MP steam. Steam condensate generated at the pre-heater has recycling and reuse
potential both as a low temperature heating medium and as boiler feed water. During
cooking, in order to avoid development of false pressure, the accumulated non-condensable
gases are vented out continuously and/or intermittently. Such vented gases may be rich in
reduced organic sulfur compounds. Anthraquinone is often added to the digester during
cooking, may be for catalyzing or accelerating fragmentation of lignin and for rendering it
vulnerable to attack and dissolution by cooking chemicals.
In the Beta mill, instead of using a pre-heater, direct steam injection cooking is practiced.
Preparation for blowing includes stopping circulation of the cooking medium through the
pre-heater and brining down digester pressure to the desired level through venting. Once
pressure is dropped to the desired level, digester contents (cooked material along with the
cooking medium) are blown under pressure into a blow tank. Blowing leads to drop in the
temperature of the blown material to under 100ºC. Excess heat of the blown material is lost
in the form of blow vapours from the blow tank. Sometimes blow may not be complete and
some of the cooked material may still be left in the digester. In such cases, the digester is
added with the black liquor (obtained from pulp washing), pressurized with steam and then
the digester contents are re-blown. Heat is recovered from the blow vapours through a blow
heat recovery system.
In one of the pulping units of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, where grasses, straw and bagasse
are used as raw-material, cooking liquor is blown separate from the cooked material. After
blowing the liquor, the cooked material is drained out from the digester as slurry with the
help of water jets. Generalized batch Kraft pulping process is schematically shown in
Figures-4.1.3 & 4.1.4. heat recovery

During blowing, temperature of the blown material is dropped to about 105°C. This drop
results in the release of excess heat in the form of blow vapours from the blow tank. These
vapours are hot (>100°C) and odoriferous (due to the presence of reduced organic sulfur
compounds). Blow heat recovery system is used for recovering heat from these vapours and
for containing the foul smelling gases.
After cleaning in a cyclone separator (for removing fibrous matter), blow vapours are made
to flow through two (direct contact) condensers, connected in series, and brought in contact
with cold condensate (which is pumped from the cold condensate section of an accumulator
tank). Hot condensate, generated in the condensers from the condensation of vapours and
from the heat transfer to the cold condensate, is collected into the hot condensate section of
the accumulator tank. Accumulator tank has a top hot condensate section and a bottom cold
condensate section, both separated by a moving interface. Non-condensable fraction of the
blow vapours are allowed to escape into the atmosphere through a vent provided on the
second condenser.
Hot condensate of the accumulator tank is circulated through a fiber filter and a heat
exchanger and collected as cold condensate into the cold condensate section of the tank. In
the heat exchanger, heat content of the hot condensate is transferred and used for producing
hot water from the process water. Excess condensate of the accumulator tank is allowed to
overflow into sewer from the cold condensate section of the tank. In the Gamma Pulp and
Paper Mill, part of the hot condensate is used in the brown stock washing.
Process flow diagram of the heat recovery system of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill is
shown in Figure-4.1.4. Pulp Processing

Processing of Kraft pulp includes the following operations/activities.
Pulp from the blow tank is usually screened in a pressure screen or a vibratory screen or a
gravity centrifugal screen (and sometimes defiberized in a disc refiner), prior to its
washing. Because of high rejection rates, rejects of pressure screens are usually further
screened in a secondary pressure screen and/or a vibratory screen for recovering useful
fiber from the rejects. Pressure screens may also separate tramp material from the pulp. Use
of vibratory screens is associated with foaming and liquor spatter problem. Foaming
problem is relatively less (when compared with vibratory screens) in case of gravity and
centrifugal screens. Rejects generated from screening (known as knots) are either discarded
as waste (through burning, land filling, etc.) or loaded back to the digester either along with
fresh chips or as a separate batch. Dripping of cooking liquor is common in the knots
handling area. See Figure-4.1.5 for a flow diagram of screening in a pulp processing unit of
the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill.
In the old pulp unit of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, where cooking medium is blown separate
from the cooked material, the blown medium is screened separately, and the fibrous mass
recovered from such screening is added to the pulp slurry prior to its screening, cleaning
and washing. washing (Brown Stock Washing)

Multistage counter current washing is practiced for minimizing water consumption and
obtaining relatively higher strength weak black liquor (WBL). Three or more rotary
vacuum drum washers, connected in series, are used. For ensuring better washing, hot
water is used. Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill is using hot foul condensate, obtained from the
condensation of blow vapours to partially replace hot water in the pulp washing. Perforated
screen plate of the drum is cleaned by hot water or by the vapour condensate of the blow
tank. Rotary drum washers are usually enclosed in hoods and ventilated by active
ventilation systems for avoiding foul smells and vapours problem.
A typical drum washer includes a vat, a rotating drum, a repulper, a seal tank connected to
the drum by a barometric leg (for creating vacuum in the rotating drum and for conveying
the collected filtrate from the drum to the seal pit), and pumps & piping for pumping and
conveying the seal pit overflows to the drum washer for reuse in the displacement showers
and repulper of the upstream washing unit. Wash water is also reused in the vat for pulp
dilution in the same washing unit. In order to avoid foaming problems, seal tanks are
ventilated into a foam tank, and this tank in turn is provided with foam breaking and
venting arrangements.
Rotating vacuum drum picks up pulp from the vat in the form of a mat and liquor is
removed from it when the drum is outside the vat. Application of wash liquor through
displacement showers leads to further washing of the pulp. Washed pulp mat is removed
with the help of a doctor blade from the drum, repulped in the repulper and sent to the next
washer. Once the pulp mat is removed, prior to submergence in the vat pulp, water sprays
clean perforated screen plate of the drum. Figure-4.1.6 gives the details on rotary vacuum
drum washer.
WBL generated from the multistage counter current brown stock washing and collected
into the seal tank of the first brown stock washer, is, ultimately, pumped to the chemical
recovery plant for producing white liquor. However, a part of this WBL is reused in the
blow tank for zone dilution of pulp, in the screening operations for elutriation, and in the
digesters for adjusting wood to liquor ratio and for facilitating reblows.
In the Alpha Pulp Mill, a rotary pressure washer (also known as DD Washer) is used for
pulp washing. In this case, water from the pulp mat is removed or displaced by applying
pressure. A single rotary pressure washer may have as many as four liquor displacement
stages of washing. Foaming and odor problems are almost eliminated in this type of
Rotary pressure washer can be considered to include the following zones:
a) Pulp feed zone: The pulp to be washed is pumped into this zone at high pressure and
formation of a pulp mat over the perforated plate of the washer drum is facilitated.
b) Washing zone: Four-stage counter-current displacement washing of the pulp is carried
out in this zone. Hot water under high pressure is used as washing medium in the last
stage of washing. Circulating filtrate pumps, located between the successive washing
stages, pressurize the washing medium and supply it to the subsequent stage of
c) Washed pulp discharge zone: In this zone, the pulp mat is first exposed to suction for
sucking out the washing medium, and then to short pressurized air impulse, from inside,
for loosening the pulp mat. Loosened pulp mat is discharged and conveyed by a screw
conveyor to next process step.
d) Perforated screen plate washing zone: Here, very high pressure wash water is used in
the wash water pipe showers for washing the plate. cleaning
Pulp cleaning is meant for the removal of sand, dirt and other dense particles from the pulp.
High density cleaners (HD cleaners) and/or multi-stage centri-cleaners are used for cleaning
the pulp. In the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, a reiffler, wherein heavier particles are allowed
to settle under gravity, is used for pulp cleaning.
HD cleaners are employed for cleaning the pulp prior to brown stock washing. These can
tolerate higher pulp consistencies (3-4%), and are appropriate for removing relatively larger
size heavier particles. These cleaners have stock savers attached to them for re-suspending
the rejects and recovering good fiber. This re-suspension and recovery of fiber involves use
of elutriation fluid.
Centri-cleaners are usually used for cleaning the washed pulp of around 1% consistency.
These cleaners prove very appropriate for the removal of heavier but small size particles
like grit and sand. Usually multistage centri-cleaners (three or more) are used. This
cleaning process involves separation of the input pulp stream into an “accepts” stream and a
“rejects” stream. Rejects stream of one stage of centri-cleaning is cleaned in the next stage
of centri-cleaning in order to recover good fiber and concentrate the rejects. Accepts stream
of a centri-cleaner stage is passed through the earlier centri-cleaner stage as input pulp. A
fiber-miser is used for the final processing of rejects and recovery of good fiber. Typical
flow sequence of a multi stage centri-cleaning process is shown in Figure-4.1.7. washing and thickening

Rotary vacuum drum washer, similar to the one used in brown stock washing, is used for
thickening the processed pulp and for further wash-removal of residual spent cooking
chemicals. Water is used in the displacement showers of the decker and in the showers
meant for cleaning the perforated plate of the drum washer. Filtrate or wash water
generated by this operation (known as decker backwater) is mostly reused in the centri-
cleaning operation for adjusting the pulp consistency. In the new pulp unit of the Beta Pulp
and Paper Mill, washed pulp is not subjected to any cleaning, and no decker is used for
thickening of the pulp. Instead, output of the fourth brown stock washer is taken into a high
density unbleached pulp tower. In the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill, part of the washed pulp
is fractionated into long and short fiber fractions. The long fiber fraction is dewatered in a
screw press and transported to a nearby paper mill for use as stock.
Overall process flow diagram for the pulp processing section of the Alpha Pulp Mill is
shown in Figure-4.1.8.

4.1.4 Chemical Recovery Plant

Cooking chemicals/soda recovery involves the following aspects:
a) Concentrating the WBL generated from the brown stock washing to over 60% solids
level so that the black liquor solids can be burnt in the recovery boiler furnace – WBL,
depending on the brown stock washing practices, may have 8 to 18% solids.
Concentrated black liquor is usually known as thick black liquor (TBL)
b) Burning of TBL in a recovery boiler furnace and dissolving the resultant smelt in water
for obtaining green liquor
c) Recausticizing the green liquor for obtaining white liquor, which can be directly used as
cooking chemical in the pulping process Concentrating WBL into TBL

This can be considered to include the following operations/activities:
a) Concentration of WBL into semi-thick black liquor (STBL) in a Multiple Effect
Evaporator (MEE)
b) Concentration of STBL into TBL in one or more Forced Circulation Evaporators
c) Frequent cleaning of effects, evaporators, tanks, pumps and piping and other machinery
and equipment Concentration of WBL in Multiple Effect Evaporators (MEE)

Two or more effects, connected in series, are used in the MEE for concentrating WBL into
STBL. An Effect can be considered to include a heater section and a hot liquor flashing
section. Heater section of the effect is comparable to a shell and tube type heat exchanger.
Black liquor is pumped through the tubes of this section, while heating medium is
introduced on the shell side. Low pressure saturated steam (LP steam), or flashed vapours
of some other effect or a FCE, is used as heating medium. Heating medium, introduced on
the shell side, condenses on the tubes and the heat released is transferred to the liquor
flowing inside the tubes. Condensate generated on the shell side is collected into a
condensate pot through a condensate leg, and disposed off as foul condensate. In the
effects, where LP steam is used as heating medium, the condensate collected is not
considered as foul condensate. It is mostly reused as boiler feed water. Flashed Vapours
and Non-condensable Gases Handling System (FVNG Handling System) is used for
handling the non-condensable gases accumulating on the shell side of the condenser.
Super heated black liquor is allowed to flow from the heater section into the hot liquor
flashing section. Here, the liquor is allowed to flash and loose its excess heat in the form of
flashed vapours. The generated flash vapours are separated and sent either to the heater
section of some other effect, which is operating at relatively lesser temperature, for use as a
heating medium, or to the FVNG handling system. Process flow diagram of a typical effect
is shown in Figure-4.1.9.
In the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill, effects with the heater section divided into two or more
parts are used. In the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, pre-heaters are used between successive
effects. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, pre-heaters are used upstream to the MEE. In the latter case,
flash vapours obtained from flashing of the steam condensate generated by the digester pre-
heaters of the pulp unit are used as heating medium. Just as the heater section of an effect,
pre-heaters also produce condensate just as the effects. handling System

FVNG handling system usually includes a surface condenser, two steam ejectors, an inter-
cooler and an after-cooler. Schematic process flow diagram of a typical FVNG handing
system is shown in Figure-4.1.10. Non-condensable gases of different effects and flashed
vapours of the first effect (which receives WBL) are connected to the shell side of the
surface condenser. Cooling water flowing through the tubes of the surface condenser
ensures condensation of the vapours. The accumulating non-condensable gases are sucked
and ejected out from the shell side of the condenser by a steam ejector, which works on
venturi principle. Out put of this ejector is cooled and condensed by water sprays in an
inter-cooler. Non-condensable gases accumulating in this inter-cooler are sucked out by
another ejector. Output of this ejector is in turn cooled and condensed in an after-cooler
again by water sprays. Non-condensable gases accumulating in the after-cooler are vented
out into the atmosphere. Condensate generated in the surface condenser is conveyed to a
seal pit through a barometric leg. Overflows of the seal pit are disposed off as foul
condensate. Cooling waters generated by inter-cooler and after-cooler are sewered. A
separate cooling tower is provided for supplying cooling water to the surface condenser,
inter-cooler and after-cooler of the FVNG handling system.
In some of the FVNG handling systems, a pre-cooler is used for cooling non-condensable
gases and first effect vapours with water sprays prior to their entry into the surface
condenser. In the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, a separate steam ejector has been provided for
handling non-condensable gases from the shell side of different effects. However, output of
this ejector is taken into the surface condenser, which is handling flashed vapours of the
first effect. of Black Liquor in Forced Circulation

Evaporator (FCE)
STBL generated by the MEE is concentrated further into TBL in one or more FCEs,
connected in series. An FCE includes a heater (which is similar to shell and tube type heat
exchanger) and a vapour separator. Black liquor is pumped through the tubes of the heater
and heated by LP steam taken on the shell side. Steam condensate generated is mostly
reused as boiler feed water. Hot black liquor coming out from the heater is flashed in the
vapour separator. Vapours separated are used as heating medium in the effects of MEE.
Flashing leads to the concentration of the black liquor. There may be two or more FCEs for
concentrating the liquor to the desired level of solids. Process flow scheme of a forced
circulation evaporation system of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill is shown in Figure-
4.1.11. This includes three forced circulation evaporators connected in series. The system is
used for concentrating the semi-concentrated black liquor of 28 to 45% solids into TBL of
>60% solids. of Effects, Evaporators, Tanks, Pumps &

piping, and other Machinery and Equipment
Procedure followed for the cleaning, in the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill, involves the
following steps:
a) Isolating the effect, evaporator, tank or other machinery that has to be cleaned
b) Draining out the black liquor present in it and taking it back into WBL storage tank
c) Flushing the isolated effect, evaporator, tank or other machinery by process water and
taking the flushings into the WBL storage tank
d) Circulating hot water or hot caustic solution, or sulfuric acid or mixture of sulfuric acid,
and sodium sulfate solution through the isolated effect, evaporator, tank or other
machinery. After circulation for a specified period, taking the circulating solution to the
WBL storage tank
e) Opening the effect, evaporator or tank, for cooling; after cooling, cleaning the interior
with high pressure water jets; and draining out the wash water into sewer
f) Closing the effect, evaporator or tank and filling with process water and keeping it
ready for taking back into line (at the time of taking into line, this water is apparently
drained into sewer) Burning Black Liquor Solids in the Recovery Boiler

Recovery boiler essentially performs the following functions:
• Further concentrating and drying of TBL, and burning of the black liquor solids
• Recovering spent cooking chemicals as molten smelt, and generating green liquor from
the smelt
• Reducing oxidized sulfur compounds (present in the black liquor as well as added to the
furnace as make up chemicals) into sulfides
Burning of black liquor solids and generation of green liquor essentially includes the
following operations or activities:
• Loading of black liquor solids to the furnace
• Supply of combustion air
• Supply of boiler feed water
• Superheated steam generation
• Flue gases treatment and disposal
• Green liquor production from smelt
In addition to the above, burning of black liquor solids can also be considered to include the
following important auxiliary operations/activities:
• Soot blowing
• Boiler start-up and shut down operations
• Handling emergency situations
Process and material flow diagram for one of the recovery boilers of the Gamma Pulp and
Paper Mill is shown in Figure-4.1.12. of black liquor solids

TBL, supplied from the evaporators section, is first added with make-up chemicals (salt
cake, Na2SO4), ESP (electrostatic precipitator) ash (solids separated from the flue gases by
ESP), and ash collected in the hoppers of the boiler tube bank and economizer. Then, prior
to loading to the furnace, the liquor is heated to about 120°C, usually with MP steam, in one
or two pre-heaters. Steam condensate generated at the pre-heaters has the potential for reuse
as source of heat and as boiler feed water. Hot black liquor is then circulated through a ring
header, and from there loaded to the recovery boiler furnace, through fire guns. In the
Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill, hopper ash of the boiler tube bank and economizer is not
directly mixed with TBL, instead it is slurried with weak white liquor (WWL) or process
water and taken into the WBL storage tanks, apparently for avoiding emergency situations.
In the Alpha Pulp Mill, salt cake, instead of mixing with black liquor, is directly loaded into
the furnace. of combustion air

Combustion air is supplied at three different levels into the furnace as primary, secondary
and tertiary air. Usually, as much as 50 to 65% of the air is supplied as primary air. But, in
the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill, primary air, secondary air and tertiary air constituted
34.5%, 52.7% and 12.8% respectively. Forced draft fans (FD fans) are used for supplying
the combustion air.
Combustion air, specially primary and secondary air, is preheated by MP steam in one or
two pre-heaters. In the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill, primary and secondary air are
preheated to 171°C and 144°C respectively. Hot flue gases are sometimes used for the air
pre-heating. One of the recovery boilers of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill has two
economizers (primary and secondary economizers). Boiler feed water coming out from the
secondary economizer is used for preheating the combustion air. Steam condensate
generated at the air pre-heater has the potential for reuse as source of heat and as boiler feed
water. of feed water

De-aerated boiler feed water is fed to the stream drum of the boiler through economizer of
the boiler. From stream drum, this water flows, through the boiler down comer tubes, into
mud drum. From there it flows back to the stream drum through the furnace wall tubes and
riser tubes of the boiler tube bank. Water of the stream drum is also circulated through the
screen tubes of the furnace. Boiler water is blown down from the stream drum and mud
drum (continuously as well as intermittently) in order to prevent salt accumulation and
subsequent scaling of water tubes. Usually, the feed water consumed is 10% more than the
steam generated. This additional 10% feed water compensates for the losses incurred in the
form of boiler blow-down, steam consumption in soot blowing, etc. heated steam generation

Steam is separated in the steam drum, and super heated in one or two super-heaters
(primary and secondary). A part of the super-heated steam is tapped for soot blowing
purpose. One of the recovery boilers of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill was found to
produce about 3 tons of steam at 37.5 kg/cm2 pressure and 425°C temperature for every ton
of black liquor solids burnt. Soot blowing consumed about 5% of the steam generated.
Superheated steam produced by the recovery boilers is sent to the turbine generator for
power generation. During start-up and shut-down operations, the steam produced may not
be fit for use in the turbine generator. Such steam is usually vented out as exhaust. gases treatment and disposal
Flue gases of the furnace flow through the boiler and economizer sections and come out at
about 160-180°C temperature. These gases are then passed through an electrostatic
precipitator (ESP), in order to remove suspended particulate matter, prior to disposing
through a stack into the atmosphere. ESP ash, generated from such treatment of flue gases,
contains residual cooking chemicals, and hence, it is mixed with the TBL prior to the
latter’s burning in the recovery boiler furnace. Induced draft fan (ID fan) located down-
stream to the ESP is used for drawing the flue gases and maintaining slight negative
pressure in the furnace. A part of the solids, entrained in the flue gases, may get separated
and collected into hoppers of boiler tube bank and economizer. One of the recovery boilers
of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill has a coarse separator prior to the economizer for the
removal of heavier and larger entrained solid particles. The ash collected into these hoppers
is also mixed with the TBL. liquor production from smelt

Bottom smelt of the recovery boiler furnace is made to flow out through one or more water
cooled spouts and fall into a smelt dissolving tank. In this tank, the smelt is dissolved in
WWL (from the causticizing section) and/or process water for obtaining green liquor. For
avoiding formation of explosive mixture of smelt and water, the smelt stream falling into
the dissolving tank is shuttered by a steam jet. Spraying of the dissolving tank contents with
the help of a high volume recirculation pump, the heat generated from the mixing of smelt
in water is rapidly dissipated and accidents are avoided. Further, for ensuring safety, the
dissolving tank is provided with an oversized vent (for quick relief of pressure developed in
case of any explosion) and with emergency doors. blowing
Solids entrained in the flue gases usually settle on the water tubes (of the furnace, super
heater, boiler tube bank and economizer sections) and adversely affect the heat exchange
process. Soot blowing is practiced, specially for cleaning the tubes free of soot and ensuring
efficient heat exchange. High pressure superheated steam, extracted from the steam header
of the recovery boiler, prior to its connection to the turbine header, is used for blowing the
soot. The blown soot partially gets collected into the bottom hopers and, partially, gets
carried along with the flue gases. Soot blowing usually increases load on ESP and release
of SPM in the exhaust. and shut down operations

Shut-down involves gradual reduction in the rate of firing of black liquor solids, and shift to
the firing of furnace oil and finally running the boiler only on the furnace oil. Running of
the boiler on furnace oil is continued until the porous charred bed of the furnace disappears
and comes out as smelt. Once the furnace bed of smelt disappears, firing of furnace oil is
gradually reduced and ultimately stopped. The movement pressure and temperature
specifications become unacceptable, sending of steam to the turbine generator is stopped
and the generated steam is vented. As and when flue gas temperature drops below a
specified value, ESP is bypassed and the flue gases are discharged directly through stack
into the atmosphere.
Once firing of fuel is stopped, cleaning of the recovery boiler interior, through hand lancing
and with high pressure hot water jets first from outside and then from inside is started. This
cleaning is a time and water consuming process. Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill takes about
16 hours time, while consuming about 20 m 3/hour of water for the cleaning. Wash water
generated from the furnace and super heater sections from such cleaning is recovered and
treated as green liquor. However, the wash water generated in the boiler and economizer
sections is recovered and mixed with WBL for minimizing the chemical loss. ESP is
cleaned less frequently (may be annually) with air jets rather than with hot high pressure
water jets.
Start-up is initiated through firing wood or some other solid fuel for about 5 to 6 hours, and
then, firing of oil is started. Oil firing is gradually increased to its maximum level, while
wood burning is stopped, and continued till the generated steam attains specified pressure
and temperature (35 kg/cm2 pressure and 380°C temperature for one of the recovery boilers
of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill). Then, firing of black liquor is started and gradually
increased to the normal firing rate, while gradually reducing and ultimately stopping firing
of oil. Steam generated during the start-up is vented out into the atmosphere until it attains
the pressure and temperature required for connecting it to the turbine main. ESP is taken
into line only when temperature of the flue gases crosses threshold temperature for the ESP.
One shut down and subsequent start-up operation, in the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill
having 325 tons/day black liquor solids firing capacity, consumes about 8 m3 of furnace oil
and 3 to 4 tons of wood. emergency situations

Emergency situations associated with a recovery boiler are of two types – boiler tube
leakages, and development of explosive situation in the dissolving tank.
Water wall tube leakage can have very serious consequences. When a water wall tube
leaks, water can reach the smelt bed and result in explosive mixture of smelt and water.
When a tube leakage is detected, active air supply to the furnace (FD fan) is stopped, but
induced draft of flue gases (ID fan) is continued. However, loading of black liquor is
continued in order to ensure quenching of the smelt bed. When the tube leakage is heavy,
drastic steps like drainage of water wall tubes are taken.
Water tube leakage in the boiler tube bank, economizer, or super heater, is not that serious.
Still, leakages in the tube bank can dilute TBL. Leaked water, through the hopper ash route
can reach the TBL. Diluted TBL can result in the loading of furnace with excess water.
This in turn can lead to the formation of explosive mixtures of smelt and water. For
avoiding this, ash collected in the boiler and economize hoppers is not directly mixed with
the TBL. Instead, it is slurried and taken into the WBL. Causticizing Green Liquor and Preparation of White

Green liquor obtained from burning of black liquor solids in the recovery boiler is stored
and converted into white liquor through causticizing and clarification operations. The white
liquor, thus produced, is stored and supplied to the pulping unit for reuse as cooking liquor.
Causticizing green liquor and preparation of white liquor is associated with the generation
of lime mud, which requires proper handling and disposal. In the Alpha pulp mill, this lime
mud is calcinated for producing quick lime. This lime is used in the green liquor
causticizing process. Causticizing section of the chemical recovery plant can be considered
to include the following operations/activities:
a) Green liquor processing
b) Lime slacking and green liquor causticizing
c) Processing and supply of white liquor to the pulping process
d) Dregs washing and wash water recausticizing
e) Lime mud washing
f) Lime mud dewatering
g) Calcination of lime mud
Figure-4.1.13 gives schematic of the causticizing unit of the Alpha Paper Mill. liquor processing

Green liquor processing involves screening, clarification, storage and preheating
operations. Through screening and clarification operations insoluble and suspended
impurities are separated as dregs from the green liquor. For ensuring higher causticizing
efficiencies, prior to loading to drum slacker, pre-heating of green liquor is practiced.
Usually LP steam is used for the indirect pre-heating of green liquor. In the Beta Pulp and
Paper Mill, the screenings separated are burnt in the recovery boiler. Efforts are made to
avoid dilution of green liquor while handling. slacking and green liquor causticizing
Preheated green liquor is added with quick lime (calcium oxide) and fed to the slacker.
Slacked slurry is first screened in a trommel screen, for removing stones and other larger
size impurities, and then sent to a grit classifier. Grit separated from the slurry in the grit
classifier is washed with hot water prior to disposal. Wash water generated from such
washing is mixed with the slacked slurry. Slacked slurry is then taken into two or more
atmospheric causticizing tanks (having vents) connected in series. Through injecting steam,
and in certain cases through pressurizing the causticizing tank contents, high temperature is
maintained for achieving better causticizing efficiencies.
Loading of lime to the slackers is associated with suspension and spillage of lime. Lime
slacker is a source of noise pollution. and supply of white liquor to pulping

Causticized slurry is clarified in white liquor clarifier tanks and clarifier overflows are
supplied as clear white liquor to the pulping unit. For improving the clarity, in certain cases,
the clarified white liquor is passed through a polishing filter prior to sending to the pulping
unit. White liquor, in the Alpha Pulp Mill, is maintained at elevated temperature through
indirect heating with the hot water generated by the blow heat recovery system, and loaded
to digesters as hot white liquor. Sludge settling at the bottom of the white liquor clarifier
tanks is taken out as underflow into a recausticizer tank for recausticizing dregs wash
water. washing
Green liquor clarification leads to the generation of dregs. These dregs are mixed with hot
water in a dregs mixer tank and washed in a dregs wash tank. Wash water generated from
such washing is recausticized in a recausticizer tank through adding underflows of white
liquor clarifier and hot water. Recausticized slurry is taken to the lime mud washers.
Washed dregs, which are rich in carbon and inorganic impurities, such as calcium and iron
compounds, are disposed as solid waste. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, where limekiln is used for
the calcination of lime mud, scrubbing wastewater generated from the limekiln exhaust is
also used for recausticizing the dregs wash water. mud washing

Recausticized contents of the recausticizer tank are washed with hot water and clarified in
lime mud washers (LMWs). The lime mud is subjected to counter current washing in two
or more lime mud washers connected in series. That is, underflow of the preceding LMW
(LMW-1) is mixed with clarified overflow of the following LMW (LMW-3) and taken to
the LMW in question (LMW-2) for clarification. Wash water generated from such counter
current washing is collected and stored as weak white liquor (WWL) within the premises.
The stored WWL is supplied to smelt dissolving tank of the recovery boiler for the
preparation of green liquor. WWL is also reused at a few other places in both evaporators
and recovery boiler sections. Hot water demands of causticizing section, in general, and
lime mud washing, in particular, are mostly met from the reuse of foul condensate obtained
from the evaporators section. Direct injection of steam is often practiced for maintaining
temperature of the hot water. Lime mud washers require frequent cleaning in order to avoid
clogging problems, and such cleaning generates large quantities of wastewater with heavy
load of suspended solids, which may settle in the sewer lines carrying the wastewater. mud dewatering

Washed lime mud (underflow of the last LMW) is sent to the lime mud dewatering unit.
Rotary vacuum drum filter is usually used for dewatering the lime mud. Process flow
scheme of the rotary vacuum drum filter dewatering system is shown in Figure-4.1.14.
Vacuum pump is used for creating vacuum inside the rotary drum. Hot water is used in the
displacement washing showers and for cleaning the perforated screen plate of the rotary
drum. Frequently, compressed air is also used for the cleaning of the perforated screen
plate. Process water is consumed by the vacuum pump for gland sealing and cooling
purposes. Lime mud dewatering generates two types of wastewaters – water separated from
the lime mud, and gland cooling and sealing water of the vacuum pump. Both the
wastewater streams have recycling and reuse potential (water separated from the lime mud
is partially recycled to the recausticizing tank). Lime mud dewatering unit is source of
noise pollution.
Dewatered lime mud is usually disposed off as solid waste. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, the
dewatered sludge is added with make up sea shell and calcinated in a limekiln for
regenerating reburnt lime, which is used in the slacker for causticizing the green liquor. In
the other mills, lime for causticizing is obtained from outside and lime mud generated from
the causticizing is disposed off as non-hazardous solid waste. of lime mud

Most of the mills, mainly because of quality constraints, dispose off the dewatered lime
mud as non-hazardous solid waste. Further, some of the mills procure lime stone and
produce the burnt lime required through calcinating it in a limekiln. Gamma Pulp and Paper
Mill is disposing of the dewatered lime mud as non-hazardous solid waste, and at the same
time calcinating lime stone for on-site generation of lime. Of the three mills, only Alpha
Pulp Mill is calcinating the lime mud it generates in an inclined rotating limekiln, and
reusing the resultant reburnt lime for causticizing the green liquor. This mill uses sea shell
as make up lime.
A limekiln can be considered to have a flame end and an exhaust end. Flame end is
maintained at 1150 to 1250°C temperature through firing oil or gas. Furnace oil is pre-
heated either electrically or with steam and atomized with air or steam and then introduced
into the furnace through burners for combustion. Hot gases of the kiln move from the hot
end to the cold end, and escape out into atmosphere through a chimney. FD fan and ID fan
are used to supply combustion air to the kiln, and draw exhaust gases through an air
pollution control device (provided for the removal of suspended lime dust) and discharging
into atmosphere through a stack. Dewatered lime mud is introduced at the exhaust end and
made to move counter current to the hot gases. During such movement, the lime mud is
first dried and then calcinated. Calcinated or reburnt lime is discharged from the flame end
of the limekiln at about 950°C. In some of the limekilns, excess heat of the reburnt lime is
used for pre-heating the combustion air entering the kiln.
Exhaust gases of the kiln are dust laden, and hence are treated either in a scrubber, or in an
electrostatic precipitator (fabric filters may also prove appropriate), prior to their discharge
into the atmosphere. Dust separated from the exhaust gases of the limekiln (in case of an
ESP) or wasted scrubbing solution (in case of wet scrubbers), because of the presence of
lime, have reuse potential. Limekilns are associated with dust pollution and noise pollution
Overall process flow scheme of the limekiln of the Alpha Pulp Mill is shown in Figure-
bark and other stor., handling raw materials
unbleached wood wastes & preparation
effluent from
storage and washing

WBL Pulp blown pulp

processing Pulping
Weak black liquor

foul vent
condensate gases

white liquor
screenings (knots)
saturated & rejects (grit)
PH liquor
feed water lime
weak white liquor

BL thick black Recovery green liquor

Concentration liquor boiler Causticizing


foul steam Na2SO4

condensate furnace oil Calcination
and other fuels
exhaust gases

Figure-4.1.1: Kraft Pulping – schematic overview diagram

process chemical
water sprays raw material
effluent process
water purged air

Debarking Storage Transport & fuel oil

conveyance Blower

process drainage air & noise

bark water effluent pollution problems
Washing & white White
winnowing Rechipper liquor tank Cyclone
liquor liquid to
air LP/MP
dust & noise rejects pollution vents to
effluent steam blow tank
chips Chips to blow
Chippers Screens silo Digesters tank Blow tank

air process water

pollution rejects accepts liquor
for flushing
pollution Dust WBL
screen WBL tank Preheater

Dust Condensate
hopper pots

wood dust steam


Figure-4.1.2: Process flow diagram of a wood based Pulping unit of the Beta Pulp and
Paper Mill
A. prepared B. vent gases
purged gas raw material saturated
liquor MP steam
Blower liquor



separator Digester
liquor condensate
liquor liquor

white liquor
WBL and/or water
vent gases saturated
white liquor liquor MP steam
& WBL D.
vent hot water
gases liquor



liquor condensate
A. Prehydrolysis
B. PH liquor draining
liquor C. Sulfate cooking
PH liquor & D. Digester loading
PH wash liquor

Figure-4.1.3: Schematic of Kraft pulping process (excludes

blowing and blow heat recovery operations)
process water for
pulp wash down
blown pulp
for processing
Cyclone blow
separator vapours WBL

vent of non- Blow tank Digester


vapours Secondary pulp blowing and liquor

& condensate condensor reblowing

Hot condensate hot Condensate

section condensate filter
process water
cold Cold condensate
condensate section
cold condensate Heat
blow down hot process water

Figure-4.1.4: Pulp Blowing and Blow Vapour Heat Recovery

System of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill
blow vapours
vents WBL
blown Priimary accepts Brownstock
pulp Blow tank Junk trap
screen Washer-1
accepts rejects
WBL accepts
rejects HD Secondary
cleaner screen
Sand trap rejects for dilution
Stock chest accepts knots rejected

BL leaks WBL
from BSW
BL from
spill sumps

Figure-4.1.5: Process flow diagram for pulp screening in a pulp processing unit of the Beta
Pulp and Paper Mill
hot process water

blown washed
pulp BSW-1 BSW -2 BSW -3 BSW -4 pulp

Seal tank Seal tank Seal tank Seal tank

foam foam
2 1 foam

BL filter foam Foam tower WBL

vent gases
Filtered WBL for
BL tank sealing purposes

1. WBL for dilution and consistency adjustment purposes in

pulping and unbleached pulp processing purposes
2. WBL to chemical recovery plant

Figure-4.1.6: Schematic process flow diagram for multistage counter-current brown stock

Primary accepts
Pulp centricleaner Primary centricleaned pulp
Feed tank centricleaners

water rejects

accepts Centricleaner
Feed tank


water rejects accepts

Feed tank

Tertiary Fiber mizer rejects

centricleaners rejects


Figure-4.1.7: Typical process flow diagram for the centri-

cleaning operation
blown pulp

accepts mill water

WBL Blow tank Sand trap rejects

? mizer

Stone Spill tank Quart.
traps cleaner

WBL ? WBL accepts UBDK water

Tert. Centri
cleaner mill water UB HD

Pressure rejects Vibratory H2SO4
knotter screen tower
UBDK water
Sec. Centri-
vent cleaner H2SO4
accepts knots Dosing tank mill water
UBDK water

Vacuum UBDK water

pump foam DD washer Pri. Centri- Pulp
UB chest-1 cleaners thickener

Centrifugal accepts UBDK UBDK

separator water water
liquid accepts
DD wash Pri. press. Thickener
filtrate tank screen UB chest-2 Fil. tank
Seal pot 1
vent Centrifugal UBDK water
separator Sec. press.
? for reuse!

Vacuum UBDK
pump water rejects 1. WBL to
Seal pot Vibratory chemical recovery plant
screen blow tank, digester,
? knots pressure knotter, etc.

Figure-4.1.8: Process flow diagram for pulp processing section

of the Alpha Pulp Mill
*1 goes to next effect for further concentrating
*2 usually LP steam in 1 st effect or flashed
vapours from other effects or FCE
*3 used as heating medium in some other effect
or sent to the surface condensor
*4 sucked out with the help of a steam ejector
*5 drained out as foul condensate or reused
as hot water


section condensate from
non-condensable other effects
heating Heater
medium*2 section Condensate Condensate
leg pot

black concentrated
liquor black liquor*1

Figure-4.1.9: Process flow scheme for a typical effect of a

multiple effect evaporation system
flashed vapours and
non-condensable gases

MP steam
water Precooler

non-conden. Primary
gases Steam ejector

cooling Surface cooling water

water condensor water

condensate Inter cooler

non-cond. water vent of non-

Seal pot condensate gases Condensable gases

MP steam Sondary
After cooler
foul condensate Steam ejector


Figure-4.1.10: Schematic of flashed vapours and non-

condensable gases handling system (FVNG Handling System)
foul condensate foul condensate to foul condensate
to MEE system-3 MEE system-1 & 2 to MEE system-4

Vapour Vapour Vapour

separator separator separator
of FCE-2 of FCE-2 of FCE-2

to TBL
storage tank

vent for non- vent for non- vent for non-

LP LP cond. gases LP
steam cond. gases steam steam cond. gases

Heat Heat Heat

exchanger exchanger exchanger
of FCE-1 of FCE-1 of FCE-1

steam cond. black liquor steam cond. black liquor steam cond.
black liquor

Figure-4.1.11: Process flow scheme of forced circulation

evaporation system of the Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill
boiler feed water
vented steam steam vent
steam to the Deaeration
turbine header tank
combustion air
steam for
soot blowing
FD fan Steam drum ID fan

MP steam Super
heater Economizer ESP
Air pre-
tert. hopper ash
cond. Mud drum
sec.. ESP ash
prim. hopper WWL
smelt ash
MP steam
BL pre- WWL steam Ash
heater Wood & vent tnak
furnace oil
cond. TBL Smelt
TBL Dissolving
tank to WBL
Mixing storage tank
tank ESP ash
green liquor
salt cake

Figure-4.1.12: Process flow diagram for one of the recovery boilers of Gamma Pulp and
Paper Mill

air Cyclone

water for entrained

screen plate filtrate
water for cleaning

washed Rotary vacuum Vacuum water for gland

lime mud drum filter pump sealing & cooling

compressed air
for screen plate
Cleaning !
dewatered air vent
lime mud

Seal pit Vacuum

plume pit

filtrate as gland sealing

seal pit overflows & cooling water

Figure-4.1.14: Process flow scheme of lime mud dewatering

burnt lime
foul condensate
Hot water Reburnt
process water
green liquor (G/L) tank lime bin
LP steam

G/L G/L G/L G/L Drum

screening clarifier storage Pre-heating slackers

dregs LP steam hot water

screenings vents
Dregs mixer Causticizers Grit Trommel
WWL for washer (≥2 units) classifier screen
reuse hot water
washed dregs grit stone
& gravel
Recaust. Lime mud W/L White W/L stor.
WWL WL to pulp mill
cizers clarifiers liquor tanks
overflows process
overflows hot water water
process separator
mixer mixer water Vacuum
Rotary filtrate
drum filter
Plume pit
lime mud Seal pit
sealing &
dewatered cooling water
lime mud filtrate

Figure-4.1.13: Process flow scheme for causticizing unit of the

Alpha Pulp Mill
flue gases
to atmosphere

ID fan

reburnt lime
primary air for causticizing
process water
Primary Calcinated for roller cooling ESP
air blowe lime hopper

Flame end Exhaust end Sea shell

of limekiln of limekiln bin
steam automizing air process
steam dewatered
cooling water
lime mud
Steam Electrical washer
heater of oil heater of oil
Day tank
cond. furnace oil
For oil
sea shell

Figure-4.1.15: Process flow scheme for the limekiln of Alpha

Pulp Mill
Table-4.1.1: Composition of PH liquor sampled from Alpha Pulp Mill
Parameter PH liquor
pH 3.6
Acidity (mg/l as CaCO3) 9,310
Temperature 98°C
Total solids (mg/l) 50,122
Total dissolved solids (mg/l) 44,926
Total volatile solids 97.5% of Total Solids
COD (mg/l) 92,000
Sulfates (mg/l) 270

4.2.1 Bleaching stages

Bleaching stages employed by the three mills analyzed (Alpha Pulp Mill, Beta Pulp and
Paper Mill and Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill) are
• Chlorine bleaching
• Chlorine-chlorine dioxide bleaching
• Alkali extraction
• Alkali-oxygen extraction
• Chlorine dioxide bleaching
• Hypo bleaching
Sequence of bleach stages employed by the mills is indicated by numerals (starting from 1)
in Table-4.2.1. Chlorine bleaching and chlorine-chlorine dioxide

Chlorine bleaching is employed as the first stage of bleaching in a conventional bleach
plant. This bleaching is carried out usually at 2.5 to 3.5% of pulp consistency. Chlorination
of unbleached pulp is an exothermic reaction. Hence, use of backwater generated from
chlorine bleaching, for diluting high consistency unbleached pulp, leads to high
temperature chlorine bleaching. But, high temperature bleaching is associated with severe
cellulose degradation, specially if any residual chlorine is left in the pulp coming out from
the chlorination tower. For chlorine bleaching, pH below 2 is most appropriate. Higher pH
can be destructive to cellulose. Use of the backwater in the stock dilution can make it easier
and cheaper to maintain of pH below 2.
Chlorine is first dissolved in dilution water and then dosed, at the desired rate, to the diluted
stock in a medium consistency mixer (MC mixer). Rate of chlorine application is actually
75 to 80% of the pulp’s total chlorine demand. Pulp mixed with chlorine is retained in an
up-flow chlorine bleach tower for 45 to 90 minutes. Pulp coming out from the tower is
washed in a rotary vacuum drum washer.
In all the three pulp mills analyzed (Alpha, Beta and Gamma mills) chlorine is partly
substituted by chlorine dioxide (ClO2). ClO2 is dosed usually prior to the dosing of chlorine,
may be for ensuring quick reaction and avoiding carryover of ClO2 to the washer (which
can cause corrosion problems). In the new pulp unit of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, fumes
emanating from both the bleaching tower and the rotary vacuum drum washer are collected
and scrubbed by sulfurous acid solution prior to venting into the atmosphere (Figure-
Chlorine bleaching contributes organic halides (dioxins, benzofurans etc.) to the
environment. About 10% of the chlorine applied is reported to end up as adsorbable organic
halides (AOX). Chlorine reactions with lignin are mainly responsible for the formation of
chlorinated organics. ClO2 forms relatively less of chlorinated organics. It is 2.63 times
more powerful than Cl2 as a bleaching agent on weight basis and 2.5 times on moles basis.
On molar basis, atomic chlorine present in ClO2 is just 50% to that present in the molecular
chlorine. Hence, use of ClO2 as bleaching agent reduces generation of organo chlorines by
about 80%. ClO2 bleaching is also reported to reduce colour discharge from bleaching.
Chloroform emission from bleach plant vents, which is primarily due to chlorine bleaching,
is also reduced by ClO2 substitution. At the level of 15% substitution, chloroform emission
is reduced from 0.35 kg/ton of pulp to 0.01 kg/ton of pulp.
Chlorine gas is sourced from outside, stored on-site and used in the bleaching process.
ClO2, on the other hand, is generated on site principally from sodium chlorate, by reducing
the latter in the presence of reducing agents such as methanol, sulfur dioxide etc., and used
in the form of aqueous solution. ClO2 is extremely unstable and corrosive substance. It is
potentially explosive. Corrosivity of ClO2 impairs mill’s efforts in the direction of chemical
recovery, and recycling and reuse of water. Alkali extraction and oxidative alkali extraction

Purpose of alkali extraction is to remove the chlorinated and oxidized lignin from the pulp
by solubilization. Alkali extraction stage is used after the chlorine bleaching stage. Certain
bleaching sequences include more than one alkali extraction stages. In the Alpha Pulp Mill,
a second extraction stage is employed after a hypo bleaching stage. In most of the bleach
sequences, oxygen is also dosed to the heated pulp, which is already dosed with alkali, prior
to its retention in the extraction tower. Such dosing of oxygen reduces active chlorine
demand and colour discharge from bleaching. This extraction, where oxygen is dosed, is
known as oxidative extraction. Except in the old pulp unit of the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill,
all the pulp units analyzed are using oxidative alkali extraction. Certain bleach sequences
involve use of small amount of peroxide (about 0.25% by weight of the pulp) along with
oxygen for achieving further reduction in the bleaching chemicals consumption.
Alkali extraction is carried out on pulp of medium consistency (12 to 15%) chlorine
bleached pulp at 60 to 80°C temperature. The pulp is first added with caustic (at a dose of
about 60% to the chlorine dose) in the repulper of the rotary vacuum drum washer of the
chlorine bleach stage, and then heated through direct injection of low pressure saturated
steam (LP steam) in a heater mixer for raising its temperature to the desired level. After
heating, the pulp is transferred into a down-flow extraction tower and retained there for
about 2 hours. From the extraction tower, pulp is taken out and washed in a rotary vacuum
drum washer prior to sending to the next stage of bleaching. pH of the pulp coming out
from the extraction tower is maintained above 10.8.
In case of oxidative alkali extraction, about 4 to 6 kg of oxygen per ton of pulp is dosed to
the alkali dosed and heated pulp, and mixed in a high intensity mixer prior to transferring to
the extraction tower. The pulp is first passed through an up-flow tube (of 5 to 10 minutes
retention), also known as pre-retention tube, for oxygenation to occur, and then transferred
into the extraction tower. Pressurization of the pre-retention tube has been reported to result
in a saving of 11 kg of active chlorine per ton of pulp bleached, and to reduce AOX
generation by 0.5 kg per ton of pulp. Application of one kg of oxygen is reported to result
in a saving of 2 kg of active chlorine. Additionally, oxidative extraction has been reported
to increase pulp delignification by 25% over that achieved through chlorination and caustic
extraction. Chlorine dioxide bleaching
Pulp of 11-14% consistency pulp is heated to 70 to 75°C in a heater mixer, through direct
injection of steam. Then the pulp is mixed with ClO2 in another mixer and then transferred
into an up-flow tower, or a down-flow tower (which is having an initial up-flow leg). In
cases where up-flow towers are used, pulp coming out from the tower is first flashed, for
removing ClO2 vapors and other off gases, and then washed in a rotary vacuum drum
washer. In cases where down-flow towers, with initial up-flow legs, are used, residual ClO 2
of the pulp is neutralized through using sulfur dioxide gas and sodium hydroxide solution
prior to transferring the pulp to the rotary vacuum drum washer for washing.
Certain bleaching sequences include more than one stages of ClO2 bleaching. For the first
stage bleaching pH recommended at the outlet of the bleach tower is 3.5 to 4.0, and in the
subsequent stages, pH of the pulp can be in the range of 5.5 to 6.0. Sulfuric acid is used for
maintaining the pulp pH within desired range. New pulp unit of the Beta Pulp and Paper
Mill is employing two stages of chlorine dioxide bleaching. Hypo chlorite bleaching

Hypochlorite bleaching brightens the pulp while preserving its lignin content through
preferentially destroying certain chromophoric groups of lignin. This bleaching involves
attack on cellulose and chloroform emission. Further, handling of calcium hypo, the
bleaching chemical, is troublesome. Problems and disadvantages associated with hypo
bleaching are forcing mills to replace hypochlorite bleaching with ClO2 bleaching.
Hypochlorite bleaching is carried out at 35 to 40°C and 9.0 pH. For maintaining the pH at
the desired level, caustic is added to the pulp. In the old pulp unit of the Beta Pulp and
Paper Mill, sulfamic acid is also used, along with the hypo and caustic, in the hypo
bleaching. Bleaching sequence of this pulp unit, in fact, involves two hypo-bleaching
stages. Bleaching chemicals are dosed to the pulp in the repulper of the preceding bleaching
stage. Pulp, after adjusting pH and dosing with hypo, is retained in the hypo tower for 1 to
2 hours. Pulp taken out from the hypo tower is washed in a rotary vacuum drum washer
prior to sending to the next stage of pulp processing.

4.2.2 Infrastructure and equipment of a generic bleaching stage

Process and material flow scheme for a generic bleaching stage is shown in Figure-4.2.2.
Facilities and equipment associated with a generic bleaching stage include:
• Heater mixer for raising the pulp temperature to the desired level by direct injection of
• An MC mixer used mostly for mixing bleaching chemicals with pulp
• Stand pipe, pump and piping for lifting medium to high consistency pulps to bleach
reaction towers
• A bleach reaction tower, either an up-flow or a down-flow type, or a down-flow type
with an initial leg of up-flow tube
• A pulp washer, for washing the bleached pulp (it is usually a rotary vacuum drum
Rotary vacuum drum washer includes a vat, a rotary vacuum drum, a repulper, a drop
barometric leg sealed in a seal pit, and pumps and piping for lifting and reusing seal pit
overflows (backwater). This backwater can be reused in:
• repulper of the previous bleaching stage
• outlet of the bleach tower of the same bleach stage for diluting and facilitating pumping
of pulp
• vat of the same bleach stage for stock dilution
• displacement shower banks of the rotary vacuum drum washers of some other bleach
Efforts are also made by mills for reusing the backwater at all other feasible points. Left out
backwater is allowed to drain out as effluent into the sewer. In certain cases, where the
generated backwater is insufficient for meeting the recycling and reuse demands, makeup
water is added to the seal pit. In the displacement showers, for washing the pulp, process
water, or warm water, or hot water, or backwater of bleach decker or of some other
bleaching stage, or even foul condensate produced from blow vapor condensation, or a
combination of two or more of these are used. Pulp mat formed over the drum is separated
with the help of a doctor blade, after the displacement washing, and collected into the
repulper of the washer. In the repulper, pulp is diluted and bleaching chemicals of the next
bleach stage are, in some cases, added to the pulp. From repulper, washed pulp is lifted,
usually with the help of a standpipe and high consistency pump, and conveyed to the next
stage of bleaching. After removing the pulp mat, perforated screen plate of the rotary
vacuum drum is cleaned by a water shower (or compressed air) prior to its resubmergence
in the pulp of the vat.
Rotary vacuum drum washers are usually enclosed by hoods, which in turn are connected
to an active ventilation system. Vent fumes collected by this system are usually treated in
an appropriate air pollution control device (APCD) prior to discharging into the
atmosphere. Similarly, depending on the need, bleaching reaction tower and seal pit are
also connected to active ventilation systems. The vent gases are treated in an appropriate
APCD prior to discharging into the atmosphere. Schematic diagram of the ventilation
system (including the APCDs) employed in the bleach plant of the new pulp unit of the
Beta Pulp and Paper Mill (which is using CDEODD bleach sequence) is shown in Figure-

4.2.3 Wood pulp bleach plant of the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill
Schematic process and material flow diagram of the new bleach plant of Beta Pulp and
Paper Mill is shown in Figures-4.2.3a & 4.2.3b. Various operations and activities of this
plant include:
• Chlorine-chlorine dioxide bleaching (Cl2-ClO2 bleach stage)
• Oxidative alkali extraction stage
• Chlorine dioxide bleaching –1 (ClO2-1 bleach stage)
• Chlorine dioxide bleaching –2 (ClO2-2 bleaching)
• Centri-cleaning
• Thickening and washing
• Handling of fumes, vent gases and foam Chlorine - chlorine dioxide bleaching

Consistency of the washed brown stock (which is to be bleached) received from the HD
tower of the unbleached pulp processing unit is adjusted to the desired level mainly through
adding the backwater of Cl2-ClO2 stage of bleaching. Depending on the need even process
water is used for this purpose. After consistency adjustment, bleaching chemicals Cl2 and
ClO2 are added to the pulp and mixed in the MC mixer. Cl2-ClO2 bleaching is carried out at
normal temperature, and hence no heater mixer is included in this bleach stage. Pulp dosed
with the bleach chemicals is retained in an upflow tower (known as C/D tower) for desired
duration. After this, the pulp is washed on a rotary vacuum drum washer and sent to the
next stage of bleaching.
For washing, in the displacement showers of the washer, warm water, backwater of ClO2-1
bleaching and backwater of oxidative extraction stage are used. For cleaning the perforated
screen plate of the rotary drum, hot water is used. Excess backwater generated by the
washer, which could not be reused, is drained out as effluent. Quantity of the backwater
drained out depends on the quantity of water used in the displacement showers and in the
showers meant for cleaning of the screen plate, and on the consistency difference between
unbleached pulp of the HD tower and the pulp falling into the repulper). Oxidative alkali extraction

Washed pulp is dosed with caustic and consistency is adjusted with the extraction stage
backwater in the repulper of the Cl2-ClO2 bleach stage. Then the pulp’s temperature is
raised to the desired level by heating in a heater mixer through direct injection of steam.
Oxygen is dosed and mixed with the hot alkaline pulp in the MC mixer. Pulp, mixed with
the extraction chemicals, is, then, passed through an upflow leg (known as E/O pre-tube)
and retained in a reaction tower (known as E/O tower) for the desired duration. After this, it
is washed and sent to the next stage of bleaching.
All water requirements of oxidative extraction, excepting those of the displacement
showers and screen plate cleaning showers, are satisfied through reuse of the extraction
stage backwater. Further part of the backwater is reused in the displacement showers of the
washer of Cl2-ClO2 bleach stage. Hot water and backwater of ClO2-1 bleach stage are used
in the displacement showers, and air and process water are used in the showers meant for
cleaning the screen plate. Depending on the need, warm water is added to the seal pit of the
washer, and excess backwater is allowed to drain out as effluent. The amount of wastewater
discharged depends on many factors, such as, water consumed in the displacement showers
and in the showers meant for cleaning the screen plate, water added to the seal pit as
makeup water, backwater supplied to the Cl2-ClO2 bleach stage for reuse in the
displacement showers. Chlorine dioxide bleaching –1 (ClO2-1 bleach stage)

Washed pulp of the oxidative extraction stage is added with alkali and its consistency is
adjusted to the desired level in the repulper of the extraction stage itself. The pulp is then
heated to the desired temperature in a heater mixer, through direct injection of steam. Pulp
is then dosed with ClO2 and mixed in an MC mixer and then passed through an up flow
reaction tower (known as D1 tower). Pulp coming out from the D 1 tower is washed and then
supplied to the next stage of bleaching.
Backwater of the ClO2-1 bleach stage is reused within the same bleaching stage for meeting
most of the water demands excepting that of displacement showers and of the showers
meant for cleaning perforated screen plate of the rotary drum. Further, this backwater is
also used in the displacement showers of Cl2-ClO2 bleach stage and oxidative alkali
extraction stage. Most of the backwater is first neutralized with SO 2 prior to supplying for
reuse. Hot water and backwater of ClO2-2 bleaching are used in the displacement showers,
and screen plate of the rotary drum is cleaned by compressed air. Almost no backwater is
drained out as wastewater by ClO2-1 bleaching. Chlorine dioxide bleaching –2 (ClO2-2 bleach stage)

This stage of bleaching is very similar to the ClO2-1 bleaching. Alkali is dosed at the
repulper of ClO2-1 bleaching. Pulp is heated in the heater mixer and ClO2 is dosed in the
MC mixer. Pulp dosed with the bleaching chemicals is passed through an upflow tower
(known as D2 tower). Washed pulp of the ClO2-2 bleach stage is taken into a stock chest
after adjusting its consistency to the desired level through adding bleach decker backwater.
Process water is used in the displacement showers. Backwater of the ClO2-2 bleach stage,
in addition to the internal reuses, is reused in the displacement showers of ClO2-1
bleaching. Backwater is mostly reused after neutralization with SO2. There is provision for
the addition of hot water as makeup water in the seal pit of the ClO2-2 bleaching. Almost no
backwater is drained out as effluent. Centri-cleaning of bleached pulp

Bleached pulp stored in the stock chest is diluted to the desired consistency with the bleach
decker backwater and passed through a set of primary centri-cleaners. Accepts of these
centri-cleaners are sent to the bleach decker for thickening and washing. Rejects stream of
these centri-cleaners is further processed in a series of three more sets of centri-cleaners
(secondary, tertiary and quaternary centri-cleaners) for recovering good and useful fiber.
Rejects stream of the final stage of centri-cleaning is drained out as waste. Water
requirements of the centri-cleaning system are totally met from the reuse of bleached
decker backwater. Thickening and washing of bleached pulp

Bleached and centri-cleaned pulp is washed and thickened in a bleach decker. Washed and
thickened pulp is stored in the HD towers as bleached pulp and from there supplied to the
paper machines for the manufacture of paper. Process water is used in the displacement
showers for washing the pulp and in the showers meant for cleaning the perforated screen
plate of the rotary drum of the bleach decker. Bleach decker backwater is mostly reused for
adjusting consistency specially during centri-cleaning. For facilitating use, backwater is
stored in an overhead tank and from there supplied to the places of use. Process water is
also used as makeup water in the seal pit. Excess bleach decker backwater is allowed to
drain into sewer as effluent. Handling of fumes, vent gases and foam

The system used for the collection, handling and disposal of fumes, vent gases and foam
• hoods for all the 5 rotary vacuum drum washers of the bleach plant
• piping for conveying the fumes, vent gases and foam
• foam tanks, cyclone separators and scrubbers for breaking down foam into vent gas and
liquid streams, for separating entrained water of vent gases and for scrubbing the vent
Backwater of the extraction stage is used in the form of spray for foam breaking. SO 2
solution is used in the scrubbing tower for scrubbing ClO2 contaminated fumes and vent
gases. Schematic diagram of this system is shown in Figure-4.2.2.
ClO2 contaminated foam and fumes from the seal pits of Cl2-ClO2 bleach stage, ClO2-1
bleach stage and ClO2-2 bleach stage are collected into the foam tank for breaking them
down into vent gases and liquid stream. The liquid separated is drained out as effluent. The
vent gases are sent to the scrubber for neutralization with SO2. Fumes collected from the
towers and hoods (of the rotary vacuum drum washers) of Cl2-ClO2 bleach stage, ClO2-1
bleach stage and ClO2-2 bleach stage, which are contaminated with ClO2, are conveyed
separately to the scrubber for neutralization with SO2. Water with dissolved SO2 is used
here as scrubbing solution and the scrubbing solution is kept in circulation and
continuously replenished by injecting SO2.
A blower is provided for collecting and conveying the fumes, vent gases and foam, through
the system, and discharging neutralized vent gases into the atmosphere. Vent gases, fumes
and foam of washers and seal pits of the extraction stage and bleach decker are not
subjected to any treatment. Instead these are connected to the ventilation system just before
the blower for facilitating their proper collection and disposal into the atmosphere.

4.2.4 Bleach Chemicals and their production

Bleach plants analyzed in the study are using the following bleach chemicals:
• Chlorine
• Chlorine dioxide
• Caustic
• Sodium or calcium hypochlorite
• Sulfur dioxide
Of these, the following are prepared on site and made available for bleaching:
• Chlorine dioxide (it is produced on site from sodium chlorate and supplied to the bleach
plant in the form of a solution prepared in chilled water)
• Sodium or calcium hypochlorite solution (it is prepared from lime or caustic and
chlorine gas and supplied at the desired strength to the bleach plant)
• Sulfur dioxide (in the Alpha Pulp Mill, sulfurous acid solution is prepared on site from
elemental sulfur and made available to the bleaching plant)
• Oxygen (it is produced from atmospheric air through using molecular sieves and
supplied to the bleach plant) Chlorine dioxide

Chlorine dioxide is unstable and potentially explosive in pure form. Since it cannot be
shipped in pure form and even as a concentrated solution, this bleach chemical is produced
on site as a gas through chemical reduction of sodium chlorate in highly acidic medium.
The produced gas is absorbed in chilled water for producing about 7-gpl solution and
supplying to the bleach plant. Methanol or sulfur dioxide or sodium chloride is used as
reducing agent for reacting with the sodium chlorite. Production of chlorine dioxide is
associated with the production of sulfuric acid, sodium sulfate etc., and byproducts.
Sulfuric acid is used usually to provide acidic medium for the reaction to occur. dioxide production unit of Beta Pulp and

Paper Mill
Beta pulp and paper mill is using Solvay process for the on-site production of chlorine
dioxide. Process and material flow diagram of the ClO2 production unit is shown in Figure-
4.2.4. Filtered solution of hot sodium chlorite, methanol and sulfuric acid are supplied into
a generator-crystallizer for the reduction of chlorite and production of ClO2 gas. For
separating by-products formed (sodium sulfate crystals), contents of the generator-
crystallizer are continuously circulated through a hydroclone. Sodium sulfate crystal rich
stream separated by this hydroclone is passed through a filter for separating the sulfate
crystal slurry and sending to the chemical recovery unit for use as a makeup chemical. The
filtrate generated is recycled back to the generator-crystallizer. For maintaining desired
temperature, contents of the generator-crystallizer are circulated through a reboiler where
they are heated by steam.
Off gases of the generator-crystallizer (rich in ClO2) are cooled indirectly by process water
and then absorbed in chilled water in an absorption tower. The mill is having a lithium
bromide based heat pump for producing and supplying the chilled water required. The
resultant ClO2 solution is stored in a tank and supplied to the bleach plant. Unabsorbed
gases, of the ClO2 absorption tower, are collected and vented off with the help of a steam jet
air ejector system, which uses MP steam. A two stage scrubbing system is employed for
handling the off gases of ClO2 solution storage tank. In the first stage of scrubbing chilled
water is used and the resultant scrubbing solution is supplied to the ClO2 absorption tower
for absorbing ClO2. In the second stage, white liquor of the causticizing section of chemical
recovery plant is used and the resultant scrubbing solution is sent to the chemical recovery
unit for reuse.
ClO2 production unit involves handling of hazardous substances covered under the
hazardous chemicals rules, 1989. For taking care of the emergency situations that may
arise, the following provisions are there in the ClO2 unit:
• Emergency process water supply to the generator-crystallizer
• Generator dump tank for dumping contents of the generator-crystallizer
• Containments for the key chemical tanks like chlorite and acid tanks
• Closed sewers with barometric legs of different ejector systems directly opening
into them Hypochlorite
Hypochlorite is unstable and looses its strength on standing. At higher temperatures
(>50ºC) or in the absence of excess alkali, it decomposes and forms chlorate. Hence,
hypochlorite is produced on-site through reacting chlorine with 5% caustic solution or milk
of lime.
In the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, calcium hypo is produced through reacting sniff gases and
chlorine line purgings of the on-site chlor-alkali plant with milk of lime. Process and
material flow diagram of the hypo unit is shown in Figure-4.2.5a. Milk of lime of desired
strength is prepared through slaking lime in a lime slacker in hot water and cleaning the
resultant slurry in a classifier and a grit-settling tank. Two hypo towers connected in series
are used for counter-current scrubbing of the sniff gases and chlorine line purgings with
milk of lime. During such scrubbing, chlorine of the sniff gases and purgings reacts with
lime and produces hypo. Once strength of the produced hypo (scrubbing solution) reaches
the desired level, it is drained out as hypo solution, stored in a hypo storage tank and
supplied to the bleach plant.
In the Alpha Pulp Mill, which produces rayon grade pulp, sodium hypo is used in the
bleach plant. This hypo is produced through reacting 5% caustic solution with chlorine.
Process and material flow diagram of the hypochlorite unit is shown in Figure-4.2.5b. In
this unit liquid chlorine supplied in bullets is evaporated in chlorine evaporator and used in
the hypo tower for reacting with caustic. Heat energy required for such evaporation is
supplied through jacket heating by steam. 50% strength caustic is diluted to 5% strength
with process water in an alkali tank and used in the hypo tower. Sodium hypochlorite
produced is stored in a hypo storage tank and supplied to the bleach plant. Sulfur dioxide

In the Alpha Pulp Mill, sulfur dioxide is produced on-site. Process and material flow
diagram of this sulfur dioxide unit is shown in Figure-4.2.6. Elemental sulfur, which is
stored in open space, is first melted in a melting tank by LP steam and liquid sulfur is
injected into the furnace for combustion in excess air. Rate of burning is controlled in the
furnace by regulating the furnace temperature through jacket cooling by process water.
Required air is supplied with the help of a blower. During the start-up, diesel oil is burnt in
the furnace for raising the temperature to the desired level prior to the starting the burning
of liquid sulfur. Exhaust gases of the furnace, which are rich in SO 2, are cooled by process
water and then absorbed in process water in an absorption tower for producing sulfur
dioxide solution (sulfurous acid). This solution is stored in a tank and supplied to the bleach
plant. Oxygen
Absorption based separation systems are used for on-site production of oxygen from
atmospheric air. It is an energy intensive dry process. It requires almost no material inputs
except atmospheric air. And, it has no significant air pollution impacts. Process flow
diagram of an on-site oxygen production unit of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill is shown in
Figure-4.2.7. Atmospheric air is first compressed and treated for the removal of water.
There may be inter-cooler and after-cooler for ensuring the water removal. Then dry air is
passed through a molecular sieve adsorbent at high pressure. At this pressure, nitrogen and
other impurities of the air are picked up by the adsorbent, while oxygen comes out
unaffected from the adsorption system. This oxygen is further pressurized, stored and
supplied to the bleach plant. Once saturated with nitrogen and other impurities, the
molecular sieve is regenerated through lowering the pressure, where the adsorbed nitrogen
escapes into the atmosphere.
Bleaching chemicals

MC mixer Bleaching
tower Back water from
next bleaching stage
1. 4.

Backwater Stand pipe Rotary vacuum Repulper Pulp to the next

for sealing & pump drum washer stage of bleaching
for vat 5.
Bleaching chemicals
Pulp from Heater
repulper of mixer Seal tank
previous stage

steam to repulper of previous Bleach effluent

stage & to other
points for reuse

1. Water for the displacement shower banks (process water,

hot water, foul condensate or backwater of the same
stage or some other stage of bleaching)
2. Water and compressed air in the showers meant for
cleaning the screen plate of the rotary drum
3. Vent fumes to be collected treated and disposed
4. Fumes to be collected treated and disposed with the help
of an enclosing hood and ventilation system
5. Foam to the foam collection and handling system

Figure-4.2.2: Schematic diagram of a typical bleach stage

Vent gases


Vent of washer and

seal pit of E/O stage Vent gases and fumes
of C/D, D1 and D2 stage
towers & washers
Vent of bleach
Decker washer

Backwater of E/O Mist

stage for spray eliminator
Foam from seal pits gases
of C/D, D1 and D2 Foal tank Scrubber Cyclone
bleach stages separator
Liquid/ scrubbing
backwater solution

Seal pit

Effluent to drain to drain

Figure-4.2.1: Schematic diagram of the active ventilation system

of the new bleach plant of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill
E/O filtrate
C/D ClO E/O tower Pulp to
filtrate 2 ClO2-1 washer*
fumes fumes
C/D filtrate D1 filtrate
E/O filtrate
Chlorine ClO2-1
C/D tower E/O pre-tube


MC mixer MC mixer ClO2 MC mixer

D1 filtrate D1 filtrate
E/O filtrate Hot water
Warm water
Stand pipe Stand pipe Stand pipe
& pump & pump & pump
fumes fumes
Process Process
water Hot water water & air
C/D washer Heater mixer E/O washer Heater mixer
pulp tower
filtrate foam filtrate foam
for vat dil. NaOH & for vat dil.
Washed C/D filtrate E/O filtrate E/O filtrate
Brown stock seal tank steam seal tank steam

C/D filtrate E/O filtrate

Backwater Backwater
to drain warm water to drain

* Continued in Figure 4.2.3b

Figure-4.2.3a: Schematic process and material flow diagram for

the new bleach plant of the Beta Pulp and paper Mill
D2 filtrate

ClO2-2 Pulp to paper

tower machines

Pulp from
ClO2-1 tower* ClO2 MC mixer BD filtrate HD tower
D2 filtrate Process water
Hot water
Stand pipe 3-step cent. Stand pipe
& pump cleaning & pump
fumes fumes
BD fumes
air air pulp
ClO2-1 ClO2-2 Bleach
Heater mixer Stock chest
washer washer decker
filtrate foam filtrate foam BD filtrate filtrate
for vat dil. steam for vat dil. for vat dil.
ClO2-1filtrate ClO2-2filtrate Hot water Filtrate
seal tank seal tank seal tank
D1 filtrate D2 filtrate BD filtrate
Backwater Backwater process water
SO2 SO2 OH tank
to drain to drain
BD filtrate for
D1 filtrate D2 filtrate centricleaning BD filtrate

* Continued from Figure 4.2.3a

Figure-4.2.3b: Schematic process and material flow diagram for the

new bleach plant of the Beta Pulp and paper Mill
slurry to
mill water
filtrate Saltcake Generator MP steam ejector
Ejector filter dump tank vent
filtered air water
cooling water
barometric Filtrate lights Hydro- off Cooler Absorption Ejector
leg into drain separator clone gases tower cooler
off gases chilled
emergency cooling water
water Generator water
H2SO4 crystallizer
ClO2 Vent barometric
clear solution
Stor. tank scrubber leg to drain

H2SO4 H2SO4 dilution
tank filter water

ClO2 solution
Chlorite to bleaching Seal pit

off gases
Filter OH tank
hotwater LP steam reboiler
overflows condensate
Heating for dissolving filter
tank chlorite vent gases
hotwater process Air ejector
water water system white WL
Methanol liquor (WL) scrubber
tank stor. tank
ejected water and slurry to
non-condensable recovery
sodium chlorite gases methanol

Figure-4.2.4: On-site chlorine dioxide production unit of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill
lime condensates

Hot water excess of MOL Off gases to

Lime bin tank atmosphere Sniff gases &
chlorine line purgings

Lime slacker Classifier Grit settling Hypo Hypo

tank tower-2 tower-1


hot water grit grit
Hypo Hypo Hypo
sump-2 sump-1 stor. tank
a. Calcium hypo plant of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill Hypo to
Seam for
Jacket heating
Liquid Chlorine
Chlorine evaporator
Steam cond. tower

Alkali tank Hypo Hypo

50% NaOH sump stor. tank Hypo to bleaching

Process water
Caustic to
b. Sodium hypo plant of Alpha Pulp Mill

Figure-4.2.5: Process and material flow diagrams of

Hypochlorite units of Beta Pulp and Paper Mill and Alpha Pulp

LP steam melting tank
water liquid condensate

Combustion Sulfur diesel oil

combustion air air blower furnace
smelt &
cooling water cooling residues
gases cooler
cooling water

process water vent gases

SO2 abs.

SO2 Storage

SO2 solution
to bleaching

Figure-4.2.6: Process and material flow diagram of sulfur dioxide production unit of Alpha
Pulp Mill
atmospheric air


Air receiver


Molecular Molecular nitrogen gas release

sieve sieve
on depressurization


storage tank

to bleaching

Figure-4.2.7: Process flow diagram of non-cryogenic oxygen

production unit of the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill
Table 4.2.1: Sequence of bleaching stages adopted by the various
Bleaching stage New New Old Bleach
bleach bleach bleach plant of
plant of plant of plant of Gamma
Alpha Beta mill Beta mill mill
Oxygen − − − −
Ozone − − − −
Enzymatic − − − −
treatment of pulp
Chlorine bleaching − − 1 −
Cl2 – ClO2 1 1 − 1
Extraction − − 2 −
Oxidative − − − −
Oxidative peroxide 2 2 − 2
ClO2 bleaching 4 3, 4 − 5
Hypo chlorite 3 − 3, 4 3, 4
Peroxide bleaching 5 − − −

In this table the order of bleach stages is shown by natural numbers

starting from 1 (for first stage) onwards.
Here, nth number indicates nth stage in the bleaching sequence.



4.3.1 Overview
Pulping is concerned with the disintegration of waste paper and/or paper board into fiber
mass or pulp stock. Processing of the pulp stock is concerned with removal of contaminants
and print, and with bleaching and colour stripping. Processing results in the production of
furnish that is used in the stock preparation for paper making. Processes involved in the
pulping and pulp processing are
1. Hydrapulping
2. Contaminants removal
3. Deinking
4. Bleaching and colour stripping
Process flow schemes employed by the two secondary fiber based paper mills analysed
(Epsilon paper Mill and Delta Paper Mill) are shown in Figure-4.3.1. Examination of these
process flow schemes indicate that the operations/activities listed below are typically
employed in the pulping and processing of secondary fiber:
a. Hydrapulping f. Refining
b. Screening g. Flotation
c. Cleaning h. Washing and thickening
d. Fractionation i. Bleaching and colour
e. Dispersion and kneading stripping

4.3.2 Hydrapulping
Hydrapulping is meant for processing the raw-material (waste paper) into defibered stock
and supplying to the subsequent operations. Further, pulping is supposed to facilitate
separation/removal of contaminants, such as adhesives, inks, laminated materials, etc., from
the stock in the subsequent operations. High consistency (>12%) batch pulpers are usually
preferred for hydrapulping. In both the waste paper based mills analysed, high consistency
batch pulpers are used. Lower level of contaminant degradation, better contaminant
removal, lower energy requirements and saving of chemicals (such as deinking chemicals)
are the main advantages reported with these pulpers.
The waste paper in the hydra-pulper is slushed and the slushed fiber mass or pulp stock is
extracted through an extraction screen plate. For facilitating discharge through this
extraction screen plate, the stock is diluted to 3 to 5% consistency, prior to extraction.
Unslushed material and contaminants that can not pass through the extraction screen plate
are left behind as rejects in the pulper. In certain cases, slushed material is transferred in
total into a detrashing screen, rather than extracting through the screen plate. This screen
allows only accepts to pass through to the subsequent operations, while accumulating
rejects within. Rejects accumulated in the pulper or in the detrashing screen are removed at
regular intervals and discharged, as rejects, after washing for recovering the residual useful
Water is consumed in the hydrapulping process for the following purposes:
• diluting the stock and adjusting its consistency to the desired level (backwater of
pulp processing, rather than process water, is mostly used for this purpose)
• washing the rejects and recovering useful fiber in the screens
• rotor gland cooling and sealing purposes (in fact, usually, circulating oil cooling
system is used for this purposes, and process water is used for cooling this circulating
Higher pH and temperature substantially reduce pulping time (result in better
defiberization) and energy requirements of pulping. Further, they significantly affect
separation and dispersion of ink and other contaminants. For ensuring high pulping
temperatures hot water is used and direct steam injection into the pulper is practiced. For
raising pH to the desired level, caustic is usually added into the pulper. The caustic, in
addition to ensuring better defibering, limits attrition of contaminants. Hydrogen peroxide
is often added to the pulper along with sodium silicate and other chemicals, usually, for
preventing alkali darkening of fiber and/or facilitating print separation.
Surfactants are often added to the pulper for facilitating dispersion removal of wax, which
is a common additive in the corrugated grades of waste paper. Low temperature pulping
(>50°C) is often preferred over high temperature pulping, specially, for preventing melting
and dispersal of contaminants like wax that cause stickies problem, and facilitating their
easy removal during cleaning operations. When deinking is desired, pulper is added with
deinking chemicals, such as hydrogen peroxide, peroxide stabilizing chemicals, etc. If the
waste paper contains wet strength resins, appropriate chemicals are added to the pulper for
breaking these resins.
Filtrate generated from the screening of rejects is rich in useful fiber, and mostly reused in
the hydra-pulper for stock consistency adjustment. Tridyne Pulper of the Epsilon Paper Mill

Tridyne pulper is a high consistency (12%) batch pulper. It is used in the mill for
hydrapulping old corrugated cuttings, cement sack broke and used cement sacks. Waste
paper bales are opened, manually screened for removing undesirable materials and loaded
into the pulper with the help of a conveyor. Backwater of the pulp mill is mostly used for
slushing and adjusting consistency of the stock. Slushing is carried out at elevated
temperature and pH. Steam is directly injected into the pulper for maintaining the slushing
temperature and caustic flakes are added for raising the pH. After slushing, the pulp is
diluted to 5 to 6% consistency and neutralized with hydrochloric acid, and then extracted
out through an extraction screen plate.
Once the slushed pulp is extracted out, the material that could not pass through the
extraction screen plate and accumulated in the pulper is drained out as rejects stream into a
trommel screen, prior to the start of next batch of slushing. This rejects stream contains
residual fiber, plastics, metallic pins, etc., and trommel screen is used for recovering water
and residual fibre from these rejects in the form of trommel screen filtrate. This filtrate is
reused in the tridyne pulper for consistency adjustments. Rejects of the screen are conveyed
out and disposed off as trommel screen rejects. Some fraction of the trommel screen rejects
are manually sorted for recovering plastics & ployethylene, metal pieces and unslushed
fibrous material separately.
Circulating oil cooling system is used for the gland cooling of the rotor of tridyne pulper.
Process water is used for cooling this circulating oil and the cooling water generated is
drained into sewer as effluent.
Schematic diagram of the tridyne pulper and the associated units of the Epsilon Paper Mill
is shown in Figure-4.3.2.

4.3.3 Processing of waste paper stock

Processing of waste paper stock, obtained through hydrapulping, involves conversion of the
heterogeneous raw material into a homogeneous stock through removal of non-fibrous
material and contaminants. This processing can be considered to include the following
three processes:
a) Removal of contaminants
b) Deinking
c) Bleaching and colour stripping Removal of contaminants

Contaminants are removed from the pulp stock through cleaning, screening, washing,
flotation, etc., operations. Usual practice is to remove larger size contaminants first and
then smaller size contaminants. Further, the stock is processed first at higher consistency
and then at lower consistency for contaminants removal.
Pulping, which is meant for the break down of inter-fiber bonds and fiber separation
(defiberization), leads to separation of contaminants, such as, additives, adhesives, inks,
laminated materials, etc., from the fiber and bringing them into suspension. The suspended
contaminants are then removed from the stock through screening, cleaning, flotation and
washing operations. pH of the alkaline stock is, sometimes, adjusted to 5-6 to facilitate
agglomeration of certain types of colloidal contaminants and their removal through fine
screening and cleaning operations. First, alkaline flotation, and then, acidic washing at 5 to
6 pH is sometimes practiced for the efficient removal of contaminants, specially ink
particles and stickies. Use of solvents (water free solvent wash) for dissolving waxes,
stickies and other contaminants has also reported. But recovering the used solvent is
problematic and hence scarcely used.
Dispersion/kneading is often used, after pulping, for dispersing contaminants like wax,
bitumen, etc., or for rolling up the contaminants like foil and polyethylene. The dispersed,
or rolled up, contaminants are then removed from the stock by washing and/or flotation
operations, or by screening and cleaning operations. High consistency and high temperature
dispersion (>80°C), using high speed dispergers, is often practiced for reducing the
contaminants size and disguising their presence. Talc is often added to the pulper, or to the
flotation cell (for reducing foam levels) or even to the deinked stock, for pacifying or
tackling stickies. Deinking
Deinking is concerned with the removal of print without loosing useful fiber. For deinking
to occur, ink particles should not be bound to fibers or trapped in the fibrillar areas. Further,
these should not be present in the bound water layers of individual fibers.
Hydrapulping leads to the breakdown of print into ink particles of a wide size range.
Dispersion/kneading also helps in the deinking process through breaking down larger ink
particles into smaller ones, which in turn can be removed by wash deinking. Either flotation
deinking, or wash deinking, or both, are used for removing ink particles from the repulped
stock. The latter is effective in removing smaller size ink particles (1 to 10 micron size
particles), while the former for removal of larger ink particles (10 to 150 micron size
Use of caustic during pulping helps in breaking down the print, through weakening bonds
between the fibers and the print, and the ester bonds of the print vehicle network (the
network that holds ink particles together). However, use of caustic can darken the recycled
fiber, specially mechanical fiber. For preventing this, hydrogen peroxide is used along with
caustic in the pulping process. For preventing decomposition of the added hydrogen
peroxide, sodium silicate and chelating agents, such as diethylene triamine penta acetic acid
(DTPA), are also used in the pulping process. Sodium silicate, in addition protecting the
hydrogen peroxide, assists deinking process through – buffering the system and supporting
the peroxide activity, acting as a dispersing agent for the print particles, and reacting with
calcium and forming precipitate that helps in the agglomeration of print particles. Sodium
silicate is also reported to reduce loss of fiber during flotation deinking.
Soaps, surfactants, talc, etc. are also used in the deinking process. Soaps are added either to
the pulper or to the flotation cell. These assist in the flotation removal of ink particles, by
enhancing their hydrophobic nature, and agglomerating them. Efficient performance of
soaps require presence of sufficient concentration of calcium ions. Hence, frequently,
calcium salts, such as, calcium chloride and calcium hydroxide, are also added to the
flotation deinking systems. In some cases, instead of soaps, fatty acids are added to the
pulper. These acids in turn create soap in situ. Displectors (fatty acid alkoxylates), which
assist both in detaching print from the fiber and collecting the detached print particles into
agglomerates with hydrophobic surface, are also sometimes used in the deinking systems.
Talc is also added to the flotation deinking systems mainly for pacifying the stickies and
reducing foam levels.
Proprietary mixtures of surfactants and solvents (usually known as ink collector chemicals)
are used in the wash deinking systems. These chemicals do not require calcium ions. Here,
the surfactant molecules keep ink particles in suspension, till they are removed by wash
deinking systems, through adhering to the latter and making them hydrophilic. Further, the
surfactants are believed to wet the print and allow the applied deinking chemicals to
penetrate into its micro cracks. Use of cyclohexyle pyrrolidone, as two phase mixture with
water for removing the print, is also reported.
For efficient removal of UV cured inks, which are used in printing and photocopying,
solvents (such as paraffin, terpentine) and surfactants, or solid thermoplastics, are added to
the pulper, and pulping is carried out at elevated temperature. High temperature pulping
results in the flowing of print into spheres. As the stock cools, these spheres get hardened,
and such hardened spheres are then removed either through screening (in slotted pressure
screens) or through centri-cleaning. Enzymes are also commonly used for deinking. The
added enzymes detach print from fiber through degrading cellulose and hydrolyzing ester
bonds of the print vehicle network. Enzyme deinking can eliminate use of sodium
hydroxide, sodium silicate, hydrogen peroxide, etc., in the deinking systems.
Use of surfactants in wash deinking can affect coagulation, flocculation and separation
treatment of backwater. Similarly, use of flocculants in the treatment of backwater, when
the latter is reused in the deinking process, can affect performance of the surfactants in the
wash deinking process. Deinking is associated with the loss of fiber, fines and fillers from
the stock.
Delta Paper Mill is using a two stage flotation deinking system. Schematic diagram of this
is shown in Figure-4.3.3. Bleaching and color stripping

Oxidative bleaching agents, like hydrogen peroxide and sodium hypochlorite, and/or
reductive bleaching agents, like sodium hydrosulfite and formamidine sulphinic acid, are
usually used for the bleaching and color stripping of recycled fiber. Commonly used
bleaching processes include:
a) Hydrogen peroxide bleaching
b) Sodium hydrosulfite bleaching
c) Hypochlorite bleaching peroxide bleaching

Wastepaper composed mainly of mechanical fiber is, usually, bleached with hydrogen
peroxide.. Bleaching chemicals (hydrogen peroxide, and sodium hydroxide, sodium silicate
and chelating agents) are applied to the stock at any of the following three places: in the
hydra-pulper; in the bleach tower, and in the dispersion unit. High temperature, high
consistency and longer retention time are considered important for ensuring effective
bleaching. Further, pH around 10.5 is considered optimal for the peroxide bleaching.
Bleaching in the pulper is not very effective (specially due to low temperature). Still, split
bleaching, wherein part of the bleaching dose is applied to the stock in the pulper, is
practiced (may be to prevent alkali darkening of the stock rather than for bleaching).
Bleaching, in a bleach tower, is, usually, carried out on the deinked stock. This bleaching,
which is carried out at higher temperature (70° C) and higher consistency of stock, is more
effective than that in a pulper. For protecting the stock from alkali darkening, bleach tower
output is ensured to contain residual peroxide. Dispersion unit, where high pulp consistency
(around 25%) and high temperature (>70° C) conditions are maintained for achieving the
desired dispersion, is considered as the most appropriate place for peroxide bleaching. For
providing necessary retention time, dispersed stock is held in a retention tower prior to
sending for further processing. Dispersion bleaching is usually followed by flotation.
Sodium silicate is known to adversely affect drainage properties of the pulp. Use of
chelating agents, such as DTPA sodium salt of DTPMP (diethylene triamino penta
methylene phosphoric acid) is reported to reduce the dose of sodium silicate required.
Recycled backwater may have high catalase activity, and its use can lead to the catalytic
decomposition of the peroxide added. hydrosulfite bleaching

This bleaching is effective for the stock that consisted mainly of chemical fiber. It is carried
out on deinked stock at relatively lower consistency (3 to 5% consistency), pH (6.2 to 7.2),
and temperature (around 60° C) conditions through retaining in the bleach tower for 1 to 2
hours. Some mills follow two stage bleaching: sodium hydrosulfite bleaching and hydrogen
peroxide bleaching. After hydrosulfite bleaching, prior to peroxide bleaching, the bleached
stock should be sufficiently washed to ensure that no residual hydrosulfite or its
byproducts, such as, sodium bisulfite and sodium thiosulfite are left in the stock.
Hydrosulfite, and its byproducts can exert additional peroxide and caustic demand during
peroxide bleaching. bleaching
Sodium hypochlorite is a color stripping chemical. It discharges dyes from recycled fiber
rather than bleach the latter. Hypochlorite is preferred specially for discharging red and
yellow colors, for which hydrosulfite and hydrogen peroxide are ineffective. If the fraction
of high yield pulp is greater than 10 to 15% in the stock, hypo bleaching may prove
ineffective. Hypo bleaching can impart yellow color, specially, to the mechanical fiber of
the stock. Optimal conditions for the hypo bleaching are – pulp consistencyof 10 to 15%,
pH around 10, temperature about 40° C, and retention time upto 2 hours. Stock coming out
from the hypo bleaching tower is usually ensured to contain residual hypochlorite in order
to prevent coloring of the stock. Hypochlorite bleaching generates chlorinated derivatives
(chloroform in the emissions and chlorinated organic compounds in the effluent). of pulp stock in the Delta Paper Mill

In the Delta Paper Mill, the pulp stock is first subjected to oxidative bleaching with
hydrogen peroxide, and then, to reductive bleaching with sodium hydrosulfite and bisulfite.
Screened, cleaned, deinked and dewatered stock is heated through direct steam injection in
a screw heater mixer and then passed through the disperger. At the disperger, oxidative
bleach chemicals are dosed to the stock. After dispersion, the stock is transferred into a
bleach tower and retained there for about 90 minutes. Then, the stock is passed first through
a flotation cell and then through a disc filter for thickening. Thickened stock is again heated
through direct steam injection and dosed with the reductive bleach chemicals. After this,
the stock is passed through an upflow tube (bleach tower). Stock takes about one hour for
passing through the upflow tube. Pulp stock coming out from the upflow tube is stored in a
processed stock chest and used in the stock preparation. A schematic diagram of the two
stage bleaching practiced in the Delta Paper Mill is shown in Figure-4.3.3.

4.3.4 Operations and activities associated with secondary fiber

Processing of the waste paper stock can be considered to include the following operations/
a) Cleaning
b) Screening
c) Flotation
d) Washing, thickening and dewatering
e) Kneading and dispersion
f) Refining Cleaning of the pulp stock

Cleaning is mainly concerned with the removal of high density impurities from the stock.
High density centrifugal cleaners (HD cleaners) and diluted stock centrifugal cleaners
(centri-cleaners) are usually used for this purpose. cleaners
HD cleaners are used for removing high density materials, such as, staples, grit, fragments
of bale wire, nuts, bolts, etc., from relatively high consistency (2.5% or more) stock. These
cleaners are very much similar to centri-cleaners, but have an electrically powered impeller
for imparting centrifugal force to the pulp. High density materials are removed from the
stock and get collected into a dirt tank provided at the rejects discharge end of the cleaner.
Useful fiber present in this dirt tank (along with the rejects) is recovered through use of
elutrition water. This water is introduced into the dirt tank for maintaining certain minimum
upflow velocity, which is sufficient for re-suspending the fiber and carrying it back into the
body of the cleaner. Rejects accumulated in the dirt tank are drained out at regular intervals.
In the Epsilon Paper Mill, these rejects are screened over a side hill screen for draining out
water prior to disposal.
Centrifugal cleaners are used for the removal of heavier particles (sand, grit, clay, etc.),
abrasive contaminants and lighter particles (waxes, polyethylene film, polystyrene, etc.
provided they are not stably dispersed) from the stock. Three types of centri-cleaners –
forward flow cleaner, reverse flow cleaners and thru flow cleaner – are, usually, used.
Forward flow centri-cleaners are meant for the removal of heavier particles and the other
two types are for the removal of lighter particles. Stock is diluted to 0.7 to 1.2%
consistency and then passed through the centri-cleaners. Centri-cleaning leads to the
division of the feed stock into “lights” stream and “heavies” stream, or into “accepts”
stream and “rejects” stream.
Rejects stream is usually about 10% of the feedstock. This stream still has high
concentration of useful fiber. For recovering this fiber, the rejects stream is further cleaned
in a series of centri-cleaners. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, a three stage centri-cleaning system
of forward flow centri-cleaners is used. In the Delta Paper Mill, a five stage centri-cleaning
system is used. Rejects stream of one stage of centri-cleaning is fed as input to the next
stage of centri-cleaning. Accepts stream of one stage of centri-cleaning is fed to the
previous stage of centri-cleaning through mixing with its input stream. Consistency of
rejects stream is higher than that of input stream and accepts stream. Hence, before feeding
to the next stage of centri-cleaning, consistency of the rejects stream is reduced to the
desired level through adding water.
Schematic diagram of a three stage centri-cleaning system employed in the Epsilon Paper
Mill is shown in Figure-4.3.4. Rejects from the last stage of centri-cleaning are passed
through a side hill screen for draining out water prior to disposal. Screening of pulp stock

Screening is concerned with the removal of relatively larger size contaminants (like
plastics, fiber flakes, stickies, etc.) from the pulp stock. Trommel screens, perforated or
slotted pressure screens, screw screens, vibratory screens, side hill screens, etc., are usually
used for screening the pulp stock.
Trommel screens are rotating drum screens and these are mostly used for the removal of
plastics from high consistency (around 5%) pulp stocks extracted from the hydra-pulper.
Perforated pressure screens are used for coarse screening of the stock at relatively high
consistency (operated at 2.5% consistency of pulp in the Epsilon Paper Mill). Fine slotted
pressure screens are operated at relatively low consistency (operated at 1.0% consistency in
the Epsilon Paper Mill) for fine screening the pulp stock. Vibratory screens and screw
screens are usually used as rejects sorters for recovering useful fiber from the rejects
streams of perforated or slotted pressure screens. Side hill screens are mostly used for
draining out water from the rejects stream prior to the disposal of the latter.
Perforated pressure screens are good for removing fiber flakes from the pulp stock. These
have tramp metal traps for accumulating heavier coarse impurities of the stock. In other
words, these screens divide the fed stock into an “accepts” stream, a “lighter rejects” stream
and a “heavier rejects” stream. Lighter rejects stream is usually deflaked first and then
subjected to the next stage of screening for recovering useful fiber from rejects. In the
Epsilon Paper Mill, a separate type of screen known as Belcor screen, where both deflaking
and screening occur simultaneously, are used for recovering useful fiber from the rejects
stream. Rejects stream of the Belcor screen is further screened over a vibratory screen for
recovering useful fiber. Fine slotted pressure screens are efficient in removing stickies.
These are usually located after the centri-cleaners. However, in the Epsilon Paper Mill,
these are located upstream to centri-cleaners. Rejects stream of these screens is first centri-
cleaned and then passed through a secondary fine slotted pressure screen for recovering
useful fiber. Rejects stream of this secondary screen is further screened over a vibratory
screen for recovering useful fiber. Schematic diagram of pulp screening systems employed
in the Epsilon Paper Mill is shown in Figure-4.3.5.
Water is required for adjusting consistency of the pulp stock prior to loading to the pressure
screen and of the rejects prior to loading to the subsequent stages of screening. Water is
also consumed in the pressure screens both for diluting the rejects and the screen plate to
achieve uniform consistency within the screening compartment. Water is also required on
the vibratory screens for washing down useful fiber from the rejects. Flotation
Flotation has two applications, namely, deinking flotation and dissolved air flotation.
Deinking flotation is used for removing ink particles and other smaller size
contaminants (samller in size than the fines and fiber) from the stock. Dissolved air
flotation is used for the recovery of fines and fiber from backwater.
For the flotation removal, contaminant particles should be hydrophobic and their size
should be in the range of 10 to 150 microns. Further, the particles should be in suspension.
Flotation is mostly carried out on cleaned and screened pulp stocks of 0.6 to 1.2%
consistency, under alkaline conditions at 40 to 45° C. Flotation may involve use of soap
and deinking agents (ink collector chemicals), talc, etc. Salts like calcium chloride are also
added to the stock for ensuring requisite hardness. Hydraulic retention time for flotation
deinking units is usually around 20 minutes.
Flotation is an energy intensive operation. Usually 4:1 or 10:1 air to stock ratio is
employed. Air bubble size is maintained in the range of 0.3 to 0.5 mm. Smaller bubble size
increases loss of fiber, while larger bubble size reduces deinking efficiency. Flotation
generates waste in the form of froth or scum. This froth is usually removed as overflow, or
through a vacuum system. The froth removed usually contains useful fiber and for
recovering this fiber, the froth is defoamed and again subjected to flotation (secondary
flotation). Flotation requires dilution water and elutrition water, for adjusting and
maintaining stock consistencies, and generates significant quantities of effluent.
Delta Paper Mill uses altogether three flotation cells (primary flotation cell; post-flotation
cell and secondary flotation cell) for flotation deinking purpose. Process and material flow
diagram of flotation cells of the Delta Paper Mill is shown in Figure-4.3.3. This mill uses
the primary flotation cell for contaminants removal from screened stock at 1.2%
consistency. Post flotation cell is used for contaminants removal after oxidative bleaching
of the stock, again at 1.2% consistency. Froth generated by both primary and post-flotation
cells is collected into a foam tank, defoamed and then processed in the third flotation cell
(secondary flotation cell).
Dissolved air flotation systems are usually employed for efficiently recovering fines and
fiber from (machine) backwater. In these systems, part of the clarified output of the
flotation unit is super-saturated with compressed air in a pressurized mixing chamber. This
super-saturated water is then introduced, along with the backwater, from which fines and
fiber are to be recovered, into a non-pressurized flotation unit. In this unit, additional air of
the water is released in the form of very fine microscopic air bubbles. These bubbles get
attached to the fines and fiber of the backwater, reducing their density, and causes them to
float to the surface. Through removing this floating layer, the fines and fiber are recovered
and the backwater is clarified. Epsilon Paper Mill is using dissolved air flotation system for
recovering fiber and fines from the machine backwater. Schematic diagram of the system
employed by this mill is shown in Figure-4.3.6. Pulp washing, thickening and dewatering

Screening, cleaning and flotation of the pulp stock is carried out at low consistency.
Kneading/dispersion, bleaching, refining, etc. operations are carried out on the stock
usually after screening and cleaning operations, and these operations are usually performed
at high consistencies. This necessitates introduction of thickening and/or dewatering
operations in between the two groups of operations. Washing of stock is needed as an
operation for the removal of dissolved, colloidal and dispersed contaminants, such as ash,
fillers, fines, ink particles etc. Subsequently, processed stock is finally thickened prior to
sending to the storage chest for use in the stock preparation.
For increasing washing efficiency, temperature and pH of the stock are often increased, and
synthetic surfactants are often used. Similarly, surfactants and phosphates are often added
to the stock for improving the fillers removal efficiency. Occasionally, acid wash is
practiced for removing sticky particles. Some hydrophilic organic materials dissolve or
become suspended during the alkaline pulping and, on the paper machine, on acidification,
these materials are destabilized and precipitated as sticky particles.
Gravity thickeners, rotary vacuum drum washers/thickeners, disk filters, belt washers,
screw presses, twin roll dewatering presses, side hill screens, etc., are used for the washing
and/or thickening and dewatering of pulp stock. Thickening, specially dewatering, is
usually carried out in two stages. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, the pulp is thickened first in a
gravity thickener to 5-6% consistency and then in a twin role dewatering press (TRDP) to
28% consistency. In the Delta Paper Mill, a disc filter and a screw press are used for
thickening the pulp first to 10% consistency, and then to 30% consistency, respectively.
Schematic diagrams of the thickening and dewatering systems employed in the Epsilon
Paper Mill and in the Delta paper mill are shown Figures-4.3.7 & 4.3.3. Multi-stage
washing is often practiced for maximizing the washing or ash removal efficiency.
Washing, thickening and dewatering generate backwater. This water is mostly reused in the
pulp processing, usually after certain level of pretreatment, specially, for removal of the
colloidal and dispersed contaminants. However, reuse of backwater is usually associated
with problems like corrosion, deposition, scaling, etc. Further, the recycled water may have
higher biological activity and thus can affect the effectiveness of hydrogen peroxide, which
is added to the stock for deinking, bleaching, etc., purposes.
Different equipments used for pulp washing, thickening, and dewatering operations, are
discussed below.
Gravity thickener: It is a rotary drum filter and it thickens the stock through draining out
water. The rotary drum is partially submerged in a vat containing dilute stock. Because of
water level difference between contents of the vat and filtrate of the drum, fiber mat is
formed over the drum and water is drained out under gravity from this mat. For achieving
further thickening of the stock and to couch off the thickened stock from the drum surface,
a rubber couch roll is often used. Perforated screen plate of the drum is maintained clean
through application of a water shower. Gravity thickeners can thicken the stock from about
1% consistency to above 3.5% consistency. Poor sealing between the vat and the drum can
increase fiber loss into the filtrate.
Rotary vacuum drum washer/thickeners: These are very similar to brown stock washers.
This washer/thickener requires water both in displacement showers and in the showers
meant for cleaning the perforated screen plate of the drum. Using these washers/ thickeners,
the stock can be thickened to 10 - 16% consistency or even more. In these units, relatively
higher efficiencies of pulp washing can be achieved. These units are also commonly used
for washing the pulp after each stage of bleaching and for brown stock washing, and also
for thickening the washed and bleached pulps.
Disk filters: These are mostly used as thickeners for thickening the stock from very low
consistency to as high as 30% consistency. In the Delta paper mill, disk filters are used for
thickening the stock from around 1% consistency to around 10% consistency (see Figure-
4.3.8 for the schematic diagram of the disc filter system used). Vacuum and compressed air
assisted disk filters are in fact used in this mill for thickening the screened, cleaned and
flotated stock. Disc filters are also used for recovering fiber from backwaters. Water is
required for cleaning the perforated screen plate of the disc. Filtrate generated by the disc
filter is collected as two separate streams – cloudy filtrate stream and clear filtrate stream.
Cloudy filtrate stream is reused for diluting the stock during secondary fiber processing,
while the clear filtrate stream is drained out as wastewater.
Belt washer/thickener: These are very efficient, and have made rotary vacuum drum
washers and gravity thickeners less popular. These washers resemble Fourdrinier of a paper
machine. On this washer, the stock is dewatered in the nip formed by large diameter rollers
and wire, or between a grooved large diameter rollers and wire. Thickened/washed pulp
mat of the wire is doctored off and the wire is cleaned prior to its return to the head box,
where the stock is loaded. Cleaning of wire requires water. Stock is fed to the belt washers
at 0.7 to 3% consistency and thickened to above 6% consistency. As high as 80% ash
removal efficiency can be achieved in these washers. A belt washer is used in the Delta
Paper Mill, not for secondary fiber processing, but for thickening the sludge recovered from
the settling of backwaters.
Side hill screens: These can also be used for the washing and thickening of pulp. But use
of these is associated with certain disadvantages, such as, very low capacity, high fiber loss,
etc. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, these screens are extensively used for draining out water
from the final rejects generated from both pulp screening and cleaning operations.
Screw presses: These are used as both washing units and thickeners. These can thicken 2
to 10% consistency feed stock into as high as 35% consistency stock. These presses are
very efficient in removing ash and ink from the stock, and the efficiency of removal
increases with the decreasing consistency of feed stock. Backwater generated by screw
presses is relatively rich in fiber and fines, and hence, mostly reused. In the Gamma Pulp
and Paper Mill these are used for dewatering the fractionated brown stock.
Twin roll dewatering press (TRDP): Thickened pulp is squeezed by forcing it to pass
between two rotating rollers, while pressing one roll against the other by a hydraulic
system. Process water is used for hydraulically holding the rollers closer and for cleaning
the rollers and doctor blades. Water squeezed out from the stock, water used in the
hydraulic system for holding the rollers closer, and water used for cleaning the rollers and
doctor blades come out as wastewaters which have reuse potential. Kneading and dispersion

Dispersion is an operation meant for any of the following purposes:
• Dispersion of ink particles and avoiding specky appearance without removal - specks of
size > 40 microns are visible; specks of smaller size (<40 microns) affect pulp
brightness; but, specks of size < 1/10th of the wavelength of visible light have no effect
on brightness
• Dispersion of stickies
• Release of print from the recycled fiber
• Size reduction of the ink particles and other contaminants
• Mixing of bleach chemicals with the pulp stock
Dispersion is carried out at relatively high temperature (in the range of 50 to 125° C) on
thickened stock of consistency >15%. Dispersion of asphalt like contaminants may require
a temperature >150° C. Higher temperature dispersion uses pressurized systems.
Dispersion is an energy intensive operation, and generates no rejects or waste streams. It
reduces pulp refining requirements, but leads to the generation of fines.
Either kneaders (low speed dispersion units) or dispergers (high speed dispersion units) are
used in the dispersion operations. Kneaders are preferred when the objective is to separate
contaminants from the fiber and to break them into smaller size particles. Dispergers are
preferred for dispersing speckies and ink particles and preventing specky appearance. Since
dispersion is carried out at high temperature on high consistency stock, disperger is
considered as an appropriate place for the addition of bleach chemicals, such as, NaOH,
H2O2, sodium silicate, etc.
Dispersion units, specially kneaders, are frequently followed by washing or flotation units
for the removal of dispersed contaminants. Chemicals, such as, caustic, hydrogen peroxide
and sodium silicate are usually added in the pre-flotation kneading. Further, the pre-
flotation kneading may be followed by a soaking tower. In some installations pulping is
followed by kneading for rolling up the contaminants, such as, foil and polyethylene.
Screening and/or cleaning operations are usually used for removing the rolled up
contaminants. Dispergers are usually installed at the end of the wastepaper processing street
for stickies dispersion, for speck size reduction, or for the elimination or reduction of pulp
refining needs. Refining
Refining is used less frequently in the secondary fiber processing. When used high
consistency refiners are employed. Purpose of such refining is for imparting certain special
properties, like, stretchability. Refining is an energy intensive activity and refiners are
associated with noise and vibration problems. Circulating oil cooling systems are usually
associated with these refiners, and temperature of the circulating oil regulated through
cooling with water. Epsilon paper Mill, which produces industrial paper for the
manufacture of cement sacks, is employing a double disc refiner for refining its dewatered
stock at 28% consistency.
High consistency pulping

Detrashing & HD cleaning

High consistency pulping

Coarse pressure screening

Detrashing & HD cleaning

Coarse pressure screening
Fine pressure screening
Fine pressure screening
Thickening & dewatering
Thickening & dewatering
Dispersion & oxidative bleaching
High consistency refining


Reductive bleaching

a. Process scheme of b. Process scheme of the paper mill-1

the Epsilon Paper Mill of the Delta Paper Mill

Figure-4.3.1: Process flow schemes for waste paper pulping and

unslushed fiber

Manual Conveyor rejects

Rejects sorting system Trommel accepts
metal water drippings
plastics & polyethylene
rejected raw-material backwater pit
process water filtrate
Raw material Tridyne pulper slushed pulp
raw-material loading system to dump chest
oil oil
packaging waste NaOH process water
(metal wire)

Oil tank circulating Oil cooling

oil tank

cooling water

Figure-4.3.2: Schematic diagram of the tridyne pulper and the

associated units of the Epsilon Paper Mill
SGAP-1 tank dosing tank
to flotation-1 discarded paper
to flotation-2 and packaging waste
Na2SiO3 Na2SiO3 Slat
Na2SiO3 tank dosing tank conveyor stock from
start/stop chest
to disperger screenings

NaOH NaOH Hydro- Dump

NaOH Contaminex
tank dosing tank pulper tower
to disperger FW for
FW for FW for flushing bypass
to reductive
bleaching sealing sealing
Hydrogen H2O2 H2O2 Warmwater clear filtrate HD cleaner
peroxide tank dosing tank tank from DF-1
to disperger clear filtrate
steam from DF-1 rejects
stock to
SGAP-2 SGAP-2 warmwater from Spectroscreen*
SGAP-2 tank dosing tank hotwater tank
to flotation-1
to flotation-2

* Continued in Figure-4.3.3b

Figure-4.3.3a: Schematic process and material flow diagram for

waste paper pulping and processing unit of Delta Paper Mill
pulper-1 pulper-2 Cldf.
Stock* SGAP-1 Stock**
Clrf. accepts
Spectroscreen Flotation-1 Centricleaning Verticle screen
Accepts tank
(primary) (primary) Stage-1 (primary)

LR HR Clrf. Clrf. Clrf. LR HR

Spectroscreen Venting Centricleaning

Rejects tank Rejects tank
(secondary) cyclone Stage-2

rejects from
flotation-2 Clrf.
Clrf. LR Centricleaning Verticle screen
Foam tank
Stage-3 (secondary)


Clrf. Clrf.
Clrf. LR HR
Flotation-1 Centricleaning
Rejects tank
(secondary) Stage-4

Clrf. Clrf.
to sewer Centricleaning
Cldf. – cloudy filtrate from disc filter-1 Rejects stream Minisorter
Clrf. – clear filtrate from disc filter-1
HR – heavier rejects Rejects stream
LR – lighter rejects

* Continued from Figure-4.3.3a

** Continued in Figure-4.3.3c

Figure-4.3.3b: Schematic process and material flow diagram for

waste paper pulping and processing unit of Delta Paper Mill
to dump tower bypassed bleached stock
of hydro-pulper chest bypassed thickened stock of DF-2
Clrf.-1 FW for sealing Clrf.-1 for shower steam

Stock* MC pump-1 Screw Heating

Disc filter-1
- stand tube press screw
FW for sealing
FW for sealing NaOH; H2O2 & Na SiO3

FW for sealing disperger

Clear filt. Cloudy filt.

tank tank

Clrf.-2 Cldf.-2 Bleaching Stock**

clear filtrate for reuse tank
cloudy filtrate for
on upstream side
reuse on upstream side
tank to pulper for reuse


FW – freshwater
Hot water to warm water tank Cldf.-1 – cloudy filtrate from DF-1
tank of the pulper Clrf.-1 – clear filtrate from DF-1
Cldf.-2 – cloudy filtrate from DF-2
Clrf.-2 – clear filtrate from DF-2
DF-1 – disc filter-1
DF-2 – disc filter-2

* Continued from Figure-4.3.3b

** Continued in Figure-4.3.3d

Figure-4.3.3c: Schematic process and material flow diagram for

waste paper pulping and processing unit of Delta Paper Mill
to start/stop chest
Clrf.-2 sodium hydrosulfite sodium bisulfite
Hydrosulfite Bisulfite
Cldf.-2 SGAP-2 dosing tank dosing tank

Clrf.-2 silo-2 water silo-2 water

Cldf.-2 Cldf.-2
of Decker of Decker
for flushing

MC pump-2 Bleaching Storage

Clrf.-2 Flotation-2 Disc filter-2
- stand pipe pipe tower
FW for sealing
silo-2 water silo-2 water
rejects to of Decker of Decker
vented cyclone

to start/stop chest
Clear filtr. Cloudy filtr.
tank tank stock

clear filtrate for reuse cloudy filtrate for

on upstream side reuse on upstream side Cldf.-2 – cloudy filtrate from DF-2
Clrf.-2 – clear filtrate from DF-2
DF-2 – disc filter-2
FW – freash water
Silo-2 water of Decker is from paper machine area

* Continued from Figure-4.3.3c

Figure-4.3.3d: Schematic process and material flow diagram for

waste paper pulping and processing unit of Delta Paper Mill
filtrate to CM
screen (thin stock)

Pri. centri-
cleaner overflows to
feed Tank Stock silo

filtrate from
gravity thickener


pulp screened in Pri. Centri accepts centricleaned pulp

CM screen (thin stock) cleaners to gravity thickener


Sec.centri rejects Ter. Centri Side hill

accepts cleaner cleaner screen
stock silo drained out water
Pri. centri- Sec. centri-
cleaner cleaner rejects
rejects tank rejects tank

stock silo water

Figure-4.3.4: Schematic diagram of a three stage centri-cleaning

system employed in the Epsilon Paper Mill
stock silo accepts to
water dump chest mill water

Belcor Belcor rejects Vibratory

Deflacor screens rejects
feed chest screen (2 numbers)
stock silo
filtrate of water accepts to
rejects gravity thickener hydro-pulper

CM screen Constant Pri. CM

stock cleaned screen screened pulp
in HD cleaner (thick stock) level box (thin stock) to centri-cleaning
stock silo pulp overflows
water to dump chest Sec. CM rejects
stock silo water screen
(thin stock)
Mill water
Vibratory Pri. CM stock silo
screen screen water
(thin stock) rejects chest

rejects to
tridyne pulper

Figure-4.3.5: Schematic diagram of pulp screening

systems employed in Epsilon Paper Mill
very dilute stock

flocculating agent
relief gases vent gases

Scum tank
mix chamber

compressed recovered
air fiber & fines

Figure-4.3.6: Dissolved air flotation system (Krofta unit) employed

for fiber and fines recovery from secondary fiber in the Epsilon
Paper Mill
filtrate to
CM screen (thin stock) overflows

filtrate to Pri. Pri. centri- stock Silo

centri-cleaner cleaner Stock silo water for Reuse
feed Tank

filtrate mill water Overflows

to sewer
shower water
filtrate to drain
mill water stock silo optional

centri-cleaned Gravity TRDP

pulp Thickener feed chest TRDP mill water

oil mill water

refiner Oil cooling
system oil cooling
mill water oil water

vacuum DD refiner DD refiner refined stock to

plume water feed chest feed chest blending chest


Figure-4.3.7: Schematic diagram of the thickening and dewatering

system employed in the Epsilon Paper Mill

4.4.1 Overview
Paper making involves processing of fiber mass or pulp for improving its paper formation
properties, and adding different additives and process control chemicals to it for preparing
paper furnish. Diluted paper furnish is transformed into a pulp mat or paper web by
spreading it as a thin layer and dewatering on a paper former. Dewatered paper web is dried
to reduce moisture content to acceptable level through energy intensive drying operations.
Dried paper is further processed for obtaining the final paper for shipment. Papermaking
can be considered to include the following activities:
a) Stock preparation
b) Approach system to the paper machine
c) Wet-end operations and activities
d) Dry-end operations and activities
e) Off-machine operations and activities

4.4.2 Stock Preparation

Stock preparation is an interface between the pulp mill and the paper machine. Fiber mass
or pulp obtained from the pulp mill is used here for preparing furnish, which can be run on
a paper machine to produce paper or paperboard. Pulp used in the stock preparation may
include any of the following or a combination of two or more of the following:
a) High consistency bleached or unbleached pulp (in case of integrated pulp and paper
b) Pulp obtained from the processing of secondary fiber (in case of waste paper based
c) Broke pulp (wet and dry broke from the paper machine and fiber recovered from the
paper machine backwater)
d) Dewatered or dried pulp (bleached or unbleached) and sheet pulp obtained from other
pulp mills for use as input raw-material
A mill may have one or more streets for stock preparation. Each of these streets will be
processing a different type of pulp or preparing a different type of stock or furnish.
Different streets of a mill may be interconnected through operations like fractionation,
blending, etc. Operations and activities of stock preparation

Stock preparation may include the following operations/activities:
• Hydrapulping
• Fractionation
• Beating and refining
• Cleaning and screening
• Fiber recovery and thickening
• Blending of different pulps and different additives in desired proportions
Stock preparation described hereunder excludes hydrapulping and processing of waste
paper (secondary fiber).
Hydrapulping is an important operation in the mills that use pulps (dewatered pulps and dry
pulp sheets) sourced from other mills. It is also an important operation in the broke system
of a paper mill (broke system is meant for collecting, pulping, processing, and reusing
paper machine broke). However, in case of an integrated mill, since pulp is supplied as
high-density stock by the mill’s pulp unit(s), hydrapulping is not an important operation.
Hydrapulping is concerned with adding water and slushing the received pulps into a stock
of desired consistency. Mostly, backwater is used in the hydrapulping.
Fractionation is an enrichment process involving division of a low consistency fed stock
into two or more classes on the basis of fiber length. Multistage pressurized fractionators
with either holes or slots are used for this purpose. Beta Pulp and Paper mill is fractionating
unbleached virgin bamboo pulp in a 3-stage fractionation unit for separating long fiber
fraction. The separated long fiber fraction is dewatered in a screw press and supplied to a
paper mill, which is manufacturing cement sacks, for blending with the secondary fiber.
Fractionation contributes no rejects. However, water is consumed for consistency
adjustments and backwater is generated from the dewatering of fractionated pulp. and refining

Beating/refining of pulp is meant for imparting optimum paper making properties to the
pulp. Recycled fiber, being preformed, is not usually subjected to this operation. Beating is
an electrical energy intensive batch operation. Hollander Beater is usually used for beating
the pulp.
Refining is energy intensive continuous process. Conical refiners or disc refiners or conical
disc refiners are used for refining the pulp. Generally refining is practiced in two stages.
Objective of the first stage refining is to optimize strength development. This stage of
refining is performed on relatively high consistency pulp. Recycled fiber, and high yield
mechanical and chemi-mechanical pulps usually do not require this stage of refining.
Objective of the second stage refining (which is also known as machine refining) is to
achieve control over freeness of pulp. Blended pulps of machine chest, having about 3%
consistency, are subjected to the second stage refining prior to being sent to the head box.
Refining produces no rejects. However, this activity is associated with noise and vibration
problems. Water is used in the refiners for gland cooling and sealing. Some refiners
(specially high consistency refiners) have circulating oil-cooling system and water is
consumed in these systems for cooling the circulating oil. Refining may result in shortening
of fiber and formation of fines, and reduce drainability of the pulp.
Blending is concerned with mixing of different stocks (mechanical fiber, chemical fiber,
recycled fiber, broke, etc.) in desired proportions and addition of different non-fibrous
components (additives and process control chemicals) to the blended stock.
Additives may include the following:
• Wet-end sizing chemicals such as modified rosin, IVAX (commercial name for
dispersed rosin formulation for internal sizing), wax emulsions, synthetic sizing agents,
• Dry strength additives such as natural and modified starches, gums and non-
synthetic polymers, and polyacrylamides – starches and gums are added as cooked low
concentration solutions.
• Wet strength additives such as urea-formaldehyde, melamine-formaldehyde,
polyamide resins, etc.
• Fillers such as clay (kaolin, bentonite), calcium carbonate, titanium oxide, talc
(magnesium silicate), etc.
• Dyes, pigments and optical brighteners
Process control chemicals added may include
• Alum or polyaluminum chloride
• Drainage and retention aids
• Pitch dispersants like talc
• Defoamers and slimicides
• Silicates
• Acids and alkalies (for adjusting pH)
• Corrosion inhibitors
Depending on the fiber stock used, and on the product manufactured, chemicals and
additives used may vary. Stuff boxes are usually used for metering and accurate
proportioning of different pulps. Accurate dosing of additives and chemicals is achieved
through preparing solutions or suspensions of known concentration and regulating their
flow rates.
Blending is performed in a chest. But, for simple paper machine furnish, an independent
blending chest may not be used. Instead blending is performed within the machine chest.
Some of the additives and process control chemicals may not be added to furnish in the
blending chest. Instead, they may be added to the furnish, prior to loading into the head
box, or to the white water, which is used for diluting the furnish, prior to its loading into the
head box. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, while drainage and retention aids are added to the
furnish prior to its loading to the head box, defoamers and slimicides are added to the
white-water. System for the collection, processing and reuse of broke

This system is meant for the collection, processing, and recycling of paper machine broke.
Fiber recovered from the clarification or filtration of machine backwater (and/or of
backwater from the stock preparation area) is also handled by this system.
Two categories of broke, wet broke and dry broke, is generated by a paper machine. Broke
generated by wet operations of the machine (pulp mat formation, dewatering and press
dewatering of the formed pulp mat) is known as wet broke. Broke generated by dry
operations of the machine (cylinder drying, calendaring, sizing, coating, sheeting, reeling,
winding, etc.) and by various off the machine operations (such as, sheeting, coating,
rewinding, finishing or packaging, etc.) is known as dry broke.
Collection, processing and recycling of broke and recovered fiber usually involves the
following operations:
• Pulping of the wet broke in couch pit
• Pulping of the dry broke in under the machine pulper (UTM pulper)
• Clarification or filtration or thickening
• Cleaning, deflaking and screening
• Broke storage and supply for reuse in the stock preparation
Most of the wet broke is collected into the couch pit. During normal machine running, only
trims of the pulp mat are slushed and washed by low volume showers into the couch pit.
Whenever the pulp web or paper mat breaks, total pulp mat is slushed and washed by high
volume showers into the couch pit. From the couch pit, slushed broke is continuously
pumped into a broke storage chest. Pumping rates of broke are maintained high during
breakage of the pulp mat or paper web for promptly removing the broke accumulated in the
couch pit and avoiding pulp wastage in the form of couch pit overflows.
Dry broke mainly includes the following:
• Broke generated during threading
• Edge cuttings and paper rejects at rewinders and sheet cutters
• Paper reel rejects due to the lack of properties or quality
Most of the dry broke generated is loaded to a low consistency UTM pulper, either
continuously or in batches, for slushing. This slushing involves consumption of water and
electrical energy, and even steam. Slushed pulp of the UTM pulper is pumped into the
broke storage chest, usually after cleaning, screening and deflaking, and if needed, after
thickening to the desired consistency. Concentration of contaminants and flakes in this pulp
is relatively higher, and hence, this pulp usually requires cleaning and screening.
Broke generation rates are highly variable, and UTM pulper capacity frequently proves
insufficient for handling all the dry broke generated. Beta Pulp and Paper Mill has installed
a few additional hydrapulpers for taking care of the additional broke. In the Epsilon Paper
Mill, this additional broke, which could not be handled by UTM pulper, is repulped along
with wastepaper.
Fiber recovered from the backwater, with the help of save all units (Krofta unit, disc filter,
backwater clarifier, etc.), is recycled and reused through pumping into the broke storage
chest and supplying it to the blending unit.
Capacity of the broke storage chest may, frequently (specially during long periods of upset
operation of the paper machine), prove insufficient. Broke storage capacity in certain cases
(in the Epsilon Paper Mill) is enhanced through thickening the broke and storing as
relatively high consistency pulp in the broke storage chest.
Broke of the storage chest is subjected to zone dilution to the desired consistency and then
pumped to the blending chest for reuse, usually after passing through cleaning, deflaking
and screening units. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, instead of subjecting the total broke to
cleaning, deflaking and screening operations, only dry broke, after pulping in the UTM
pulper, is subjected to cleaning and deflaking operations. Process flow scheme of the broke
system employed by Epsilon Paper Mill is shown in Figure-4.4.1. Stock preparation in the Epsilon Paper Mill

Epsilon Paper Mill uses secondary fiber, virgin bamboo long fiber fraction and imported
virgin sheet pulp for preparing the stock. Operations and activities involved in the stock
preparation are:
• Hydrapulping
• HD cleaning
• Centri-cleaning
• Screening
• Refining
• Thickening and dewatering
• Blending
Stock preparation in the Epsilon Paper Mill is schematically shown in Figure-4.4.2.

4.4.3 Approach System to the Paper Machine

An approach system can be considered to include the operations and activities, between
blending chest and head box of a paper machine, to which blended furnish is subjected to.
Typical operations and activities that constitute an approach system are:
• Machine refining
• Metering of furnish
• Dilution of furnish
• Centri-cleaning
• Fine slot pressure screening
• Dosing of furnish with process control chemicals and additives
Blended furnish is taken into a machine chest and from there pumped into the head box for
loading the paper machine. Furnish pumped from the machine chest is first subjected to
machine refining for controlling its drainage properties. Then it is metered (with the help of
a stuff box) and diluted with rich white-water (which is supplied from a white-water silo),
in the fan pump to, desired consistency (usually <1%). Diluted furnish may be passed
through a set of centri-cleaners and/or a fine-slotted pressure screen and then taken into the
machine head box for loading the machine. Some of the additives and process control
chemicals (specially drainage and retention aids) may be added, to furnish, in the machine
chest, or in between the stuff box and the head box. For avoiding foaming problems, the
stock is often de-aerated through spraying it into a vacuum compartment prior to taking it
into the head box. Process flow sequence for approach system of paper machine of the
Epsilon Paper Mill is shown in Figure-4.4.3.
Rich white-water generated by the wet-end of the machine is collected in a white-water silo
and used for diluting furnish to desired consistency level. In the silo, steam is injected for
maintaining white-water temperature at desired level.
Centri-cleaner rejects are further processed in secondary and tertiary centri-cleaners for
recovering fiber from it. After tertiary cleaning, the rejects are often further processed in a
fiber-miser prior to finally disposing it as waste. Dilution of rejects prior to centri-cleaning
consumes dilution water at each stage of centri-cleaning. Similarly, rejects stream of the
pressure screen is also processed further in secondary and tertiary screens prior to disposing
as waste. Screening may also involve use of water specially for washing the final rejects.
In the Epsilon Paper Mill, alum solution, dye solutions, and IVAX (a wet-end sizing
chemical) are added to furnish in the blending chest. Starch solution, and drainage and
retention aids solution, in this mill, are added to the furnish between the stuff box and the
head box. Figure-4.4.3 gives the details.
Preparation of solutions/suspensions of different additives and process control chemicals
involves use of process water, and even, steam. The systems used for the preparation,
storage and dosing of different additives and process control chemicals require frequent
cleaning, and such cleaning generates effluent. In case of the system used for dye solutions,
frequency of cleaning is higher (required whenever dye composition is changed). Prior to
each such cleaning, draining out of residual dye solution from the system is required.
Drained out dye solutions add colour to the effluent.

4.4.4 Wet end operations

Wet-end operations and activities are concerned with the formation of paper web, and with
the gravitational, vacuum assisted and press dewatering of the web. The mills analyzed in
the study are using two types of formers, namely, Fourdrinier formers and Cylinder
formers. In both the cases, there are facilities and procedures for collecting and, mostly,
reusing the backwater generated from the web dewatering. Vacuum system that is being
employed for dewatering purposes is very important from the angles of water consumption,
effluent generation, and noise and vibration problems. Fourdrinier Former

Wire part is central in the formation and dewatering of paper web in the Fourdrinier
Former. This wire is continuous, traveling from breast roll to couch roll and returning back
to the breast roll through a wire turning roll and a series of wire return rolls. Schematic
process and material flow diagram of Fourdrinier Former of the Epsilon Paper Mill is
shown in Figure-4.4.4. A head box, which is located at the breast roll end above the wire,
is used for loading the Fourdrinier wire with furnish at the breast roll end. As the wire
moves towards the couch roll, the web is dewatered and delivered at the couch roll end to
the press dewatering section. Wire part of the Fourdrinier is divisible into the following
four zones:
a) Web formation and free draining zone
b) Vacuum assisted web dewatering zone
c) Web transfer zone
d) Fourdrinier wire return zone formation and free draining zone

This zone can be considered to include the wire part starting at Breast Roll and ending at
vacuum assisted wet boxes. Important parts of this zone include Web Formation Board,
Hydrofoils, Rotating Table Rolls, Sheraton Rolls and Stationary Deflectors.
Furnish is received on the wire part from the head box through a sluice opening of flow
spreader. For ensuring width wise uniform distribution, this spreader is usually provided
with a stock recirculation facility. This recirculation line of the spreader is connected to the
suction of the fan pump for ensuring recycling and reuse of the furnish. Small shower jets,
which are positioned close to the wire just behind the sluice jet/opening, are often used for
generating turbulence and preventing premature flocking of fiber (a cause for poor web
formation). Sluice jet delivered on the wire tends to fan out at its extremes and affect
formation of web edge. For better control of this edge formation, edges of the sluice jet are
bled off. Further, for containing the delivered furnish, rubber deckles are used along the
wire edges during initial web formation stage.
Web formation mostly occurs over a forming board. For facilitating better web formation,
initial drainage and washout of fines and fillers is retarded in this formation board area.
Hydrofoils and rotating table rollers are supposed to assist in draining water from the web,
while the stationary deflectors are to help removal of water, which is pulled beneath the
wire surface.
Wet boxes are vacuum assisted hydrofoils. These have full width slot at the bottom
(working as a barometric leg) submerged in a water trough. Vacuum is maintained in these
boxes through connecting them to a vacuum system. Water drained from the web, in the
free draining zone and in the vacuum assisted wet boxes, is rich in fines, fillers and other
chemicals (its consistency is usually above 0.01 to 0.02%). This water, which is also known
as white-water, is collected into a tray (white-water tray) and conveyed to a white-water
silo usually through shallow open channels. For suppressing foaming, defoamers are added
to the white-water trays and water sprays are applied on the white-water channels.
Temperature of the white-water present in the silo is maintained high, usually through
direct injection of steam, for facilitating better drainage. assisted web-dewatering zone

Wire part that includes vacuum dry boxes can be considered as vacuum assisted web-
dewatering zone. These dry boxes are connected to the vacuum system of the paper
machine – for ensuring suction dewatering of the web – through cyclone separators.
Cyclone separators remove entrained water from the suction air. Barometric legs provided
to these separators help in conveying the removed water to a seal pit (seal pit-1). Water
separated from the suction air is conveyed into the first compartment of the machine
backwater tank.
A Dandy Roll is mounted above the wire in this zone. Water (in the form of high pressure
shower) is used in the dandy roll for cleaning its mesh fabric. Upstream to this roll, a
collection pan is provided for collecting the water held in the mesh fabric and flung out,
and also the water used in the high-pressure shower. Water collected in the pan is conveyed
into the wire pit. transfer zone

This zone can be considered to include the couch roll and the wire turning roll, and even the
pickup roll (which is in fact part of the first press). Some of the mills may also have a lump
breaker roll over the couch roll. Couch roll is a hollow perforated shell and contains 1 or 2
stationary high vacuum suction boxes. These boxes are connected to the vacuum system
and help in dewatering the web. High-pressure water showers are used in the couch roll for
keeping perforated shell clean.
Dewatered web is transferred from the couch roll of the Fourdrinier to the pick up roll of
the press section. Pick up roll is very similar to the couch roll. It also has stationary high
vacuum suction boxes connected to the vacuum system. High-pressure water showers are
used here, also, for keeping perforated shell of the pickup roll clean. Paper web transferred
to pickup roll, actually, moves over a felt, which supports the web while it is moving
through the first press. For facilitating hot press, steam showers are often applied on the
web upstream to the couch roll.
A narrow strip on either side of the web is trimmed off, as the latter leaves the couch roll, in
order to reduce the frequency of web breaks. High-pressure water jets, known as squirts,
are used for such trimming. Trims separated from the web, and moving with the returning
wire, are slushed and washed into a couch pit (which is located immediately below the
couch roll) by low volume water showers. When web breaks, full width web, instead of
getting transferred to the pick up roll, moves with the returning wire. This web is slushed
and washed into the couch pit through high volume water showers. Slushed pulp getting
collected in the couch pit is known as wet broke. This broke is handled by the broke system
described earlier and recycled to the blending chest for reuse.
After transferring the web to pick up roll, Fourdrinier wire turns back over a wire turning
roll (located below the couch roll) and returns to the breast roll over a multitude of wire
returning rolls (located under the white-water tray of the web formation and free draining
zone). wire return zone

Fourdrinier wire return zone starts with wire turning roll and ends with the breast roll. This
zone includes a multitude of wire return rolls (and also stretch rolls and guide rolls). Wire
turning rolls are provided with doctor blades and debris collection trays. Further, these are
provided with wetting showers for keeping them and the associated doctor blades clean. A
series of showers are used for keeping the wire clean and free from buildups. Some of these
are high-pressure needle showers. In some mills, flood showers are used for washing off
stickies and flushing out fillers and fines from the wire. Prior to the breast roll, chemical
showers, and even steam showers are usually applied on the wire for conditioning.
Wash water generated, from the cleaning of wire, is collected into a wire pit, located
immediately below the wire, and from there conveyed to the second compartment of a
backwater tank. First compartment of the backwater tank receives overflows from seal pit-1
and from white-water silo. From the first compartment, the backwater is pumped to the
white-water silo for maintaining constant level in it. Excess backwater of the first
compartment is allowed to overflow into the second compartment. Backwater of the second
compartment is usually pumped through save all units (Krofta unit, disc filter, clarifiers,
etc.) for recovering fiber. Clarified wastewater of the save all units is mostly reused at
different places on the machine in place of process water. Excess backwater of the second
compartment, which cannot be pumped through the save all units, is sewered as effluent.
Similarly, the clarified effluent, which is not reused is also sewered. Cylinder Former

Cylinder formers are mainly used for the manufacture of package grade paper, especially,
multiply webs. Cylinder former is identical to a gravity thickener. The furnish is delivered
into vat of the former. Rotating drum screen of the former, due to hydraulic pressure
gradient, picks up the furnish and hence a fiber mat is formed on it. A soft rubber couch roll
provided over the drum screen help in picking up and transferring the web to the moving
felt. In case of high-speed formers, a suction roll replaces the rubber couch roll.
Various alternative configurations include;
a) Dry vat type cylinder formers, wherein the formation area is limited to a small part of
the vat
b) Suction formers, wherein vacuum boxes are provided inside the rotating drum for
further reduction in the web formation area and for better dewatering of the fiber web
c) Pressure formers, wherein pressure is applied on the furnish side (contrary to providing
suction in the rotating drum) for reducing the formation area required and for better
On-top formers, also a type of cylinder formers, are under-the felt formers. On-top formers
are one category of cylinder formers, where the fiber web is formed on the top of the felt. In
these formers, the fiber mat is formed on a wire moving over the rotating suction drum.
There is another category of on-top formers, known as ultra formers, wherein the fiber mat
formed is sandwiched between the perforated drum screen and a felt, or between a wire
(moving over the rotating suction drum) and a felt. In some of the modified ultra formers,
partial formation of the fiber/paper mat is achieved on a Fourdrinier like former prior to the
entry of the mat into the cylinder former over the rotating suction drum sandwiched
between the wire and a felt. Press dewatering of fiber/paper web

Press dewatering of the paper web is carried out in a press section, which usually has two or
three presses. Press is a mechanical dewatering device and includes the following:
• Press rolls – these may be suction rolls, very similar to couch rolls, having a
perforated shell rotating around one or two stationary high vacuum suction boxes
connected to a vacuum system. Or, these rolls may be grooved, or having blind
receptacles for holding the water removed from the paper web during pressing. Press
rolls may have facilities, such as, sprays and doctor blades for cleaning their surface.
Two press rolls usually form a press.
• Press felt – this acts as a receptor for the water squeezed out from the web and it also
supports the web. A press may have either one or two felts. In certain presses, a non-
compressible fabric belt is used to support the felt. This belt also acts as a water
• Facilities for removing water, and for cleaning and conditioning the felt and the belt
– these facilities may include high-pressure showers, chemical showers, steam showers,
suction boxes (known as Uhle boxes), etc.
Schematic diagram of the press section of Epsilon Paper Mill is shown in Figure-4.4.5.
Web supported over a felt is passed through the press nip for press dewatering. A press nip
may be single felted or double felted and it may be single vented or double vented (nip is
formed by grooved or blind drilled rolls). First press acts also as a pick up roll, and hence, a
suction roll is used for forming the first press nip. Use of non-compressible fabric belt is
also common with the first press.
Water squeezed out from the web during pressing is temporarily held in the felt, in the non-
compressible fabric belt (if used), and in the grooves and receptacles of the press rolls. If
stationary suction boxes are provided in the press rolls, then part of the water is removed by
the suction created by the vacuum system. In case of suction rolls, for keeping the
perforated screen plate clean, high pressure water showers are used. For collecting the wash
water generated from the cleaning of the roll and the water present in the grooves and
receptacles of the rolls, a collection pan is usually provided on the upstream side of the
suction roll.
Immediately after passing through the press nip, felt (and also the belt if used) is separated
from the paper web and cleaned with high-pressure water showers. For better cleaning,
these water showers are, at times, added with detergents and other chemicals. Water used in
the form of showers for loosening the entangled material, is collected into a collection pan
and sewered. After cleaning, the felt is dewatered by passing over one or more suction
boxes (known as Uhle boxes). Further, before returning back to the press nip, felt is
subjected to a variety of mechanical and/or chemical conditioning treatments. Suction
boxes of the rolls and Uhle boxes are connected to the vacuum system through cyclone
separators. These separators remove entrained water from the suction air and convey the
water to a seal pit (known as seal pit-2) through barometric legs. Overflow of the seal pit-2,
which is rich in stickies, are sewered.
For transferring the web from couch roll to press, and from one press to the next, air blast,
or suction, or some other mechanism is used. In certain cases, for avoiding multiple draws
of paper web between presses, two or more press nips are provided on a single large
smooth roll. For increasing paper mat consolidation, and for better dewatering, hot pressing
(pressing at 60 to 90° C) is preferred. In such cases, for raising the web temperature, steam
showers are applied on one side of the web, while suction is applied on the other. Vacuum system

Stationary suction boxes of couch roll of Fourdrinier and suction rolls of presses, Uhle
boxes of presses, and vacuum assisted wet and dry boxes of Fourdrinier are connected to a
common vacuum system. This system includes a vacuum header, vacuum pumps, vacuum
pump discharge trench, and a vacuum plume sump. Liquid ring vacuum pumps are
commonly used for creating the required suction in the system. Vacuum plume sump is
provided with a vent for the escape of the air sucked in. Schematic diagram of a typical
vacuum system is shown in Figure-4.4.6.
Vacuum pumps consume electrical energy and are associated with noise and vibration
problems. Most of the energy used is converted into waste heat. Water used for gland
cooling and sealing by vacuum pumps drives out this waste heat. Hence, temperature of
vacuum plume water is relatively higher than of the water used for gland cooling and
sealing. Since the system is used for suction dewatering of the web and of the press felts,
vacuum plume water gets contaminated with water and other particulate matter entrained in
the suction air. Cyclone separators, which are provided in between the suction points of the
system and the vacuum header, limit such contamination of vacuum plume water.
4.4.5 Dry-end Operations of a Paper Machine
Dry-end operations of a paper machine may include the following:
a) Drying of the paper web
b) Surface sizing
c) On-machine surface coating
d) On-machine calendaring
e) Reeling
f) Sheeting and baling Drying of dewatered paper web

Drying is concerned with reducing moisture content of the dewatered paper web (which is
coming out from the press section) to the desired level (usually to <10% level) through
application of heat and evaporation of water from the web. Excepting Alpha Pulp Mill, all
the five mills analyzed are using cylinder dryers for this purpose. Alpha Pulp Mill, which
manufactures sheet pulp, on the other hand, is using an air float dryer for this purpose. Drying
Drying section comprises of a series of large diameter, rotating cylinders filled with steam.
Paper web, coming out from the press section, is passed over a series of cylinder dryers for
evaporation dewatering. A synthetic permeable fabric (known as dryer felt) is used for
tightly holding the web against cylinder dryer surface and facilitating better heat transfer. A
dryer section may have 3 to 5 pairs of dryer felts. Each of these pairs includes a top felt and
a bottom felt. In certain cases, where sheet fluttering and subsequent breaking is a problem,
instead of using paired dryer felts, serpentine felts are preferred for continuously supporting
the moving web. For tightly holding the web against cylinder dryer, these felts are
controlled by tensioning and positioning rolls.
Saturated steam is injected, into each of the cylinder dryers, as a source of heat.
Condensation of the injected steam on the inner surface of the cylinder releases heat, which
is picked by the web, which is in contact with the cylinder on the outer side. Absorbed heat
is used for the evaporation removal of water while the web is transferred from one cylinder
to the next. Steam condensate formed inside the dryer cylinder is continuously siphoned out
with the help of a specially designed siphon assembly. For ensuring proper siphoning,
pressure differential is maintained between the steam inlet line and the condensate outlet
line of the cylinder. For avoiding accumulation of non-condensable gases, while siphoning
out the condensate, 15 to 20% of the steam applied is also siphoned out as entrained steam.
For better control over the pressure of the applied steam, dryer cylinders, of a dryer section,
are usually divided into 3 to 5 groups, and each group is provided with independent steam
pressure control and application system. Condensate, along with the entrained steam, drawn
out from one group of dryer cylinders is taken into a separator tank for separating the
entrained steam. Entrained steam thus separated is recycled and reused in either of the
following two ways:
a) Directly using it as input steam in some other group of dryers, which require relatively
lower pressure steam
b) Passing the steam through a thermo-compressor, where it is mixed with high pressure
super heated steam, and reusing the resultant steam in the same group of dryers as input
Condensate of the separator tanks of all the groups of dryer cylinders is collected and
pumped to the boiler house for reuse as boiler feed water, provided it satisfies quality
requirements. Otherwise the condensate is drained out as effluent.
Entrained steam from that group of cylinders, which is operated at the lowest steam
pressure, is separated and passed through a surface condenser, or through a direct contact
condenser, for condensation. Non-condensable gases accumulating in this condenser are
sucked out and vented out with the help of a blower. Schematic diagram of
steam/condensate flow sequence for the dryer section of the Epsilon Paper Mill is shown in
Figure-4.4.7. The Mill uses a direct contact condenser. Condensate, together with the
process water used for condensing, is collected here into a warm water tank for reuse.
Warm water that cannot be reused is drained out as effluent.

Auxiliary operations/activities associated with the cylinder drying

Auxiliary operations/activities associated with the cylinder drying of the Epsilon Paper Mill
include the following:
• System for supplying hot dry air to facilitate evaporation dewatering of the paper web
• Ventilation system for driving out hot humid air from the cylinder drying area
• Condenser for handling exhaust steam and non-condensable gases of cylinder dryers
• Centralized circulating oil lubrication & cooling system for the rollers of cylinder
• Machine drives and their air cooling system
• Under the machine pulper (UTM Pulper) for handling dry broke
Auxiliary operations/activities of cylinder drying section of Epsilon Paper Mill are
schematically shown in Figure-4.4.8.
Pockets formed between the top and bottom dryer cylinders, make escape of humid air
(loaded with evaporated water) very difficult. To facilitate removal of this humid air, or to
ensure better pocket ventilation, dry (hot) air is injected into these pockets at one end for
driving out humid air through the other end. Frequently, drier felt rolls are also used for
introducing dry air into these pockets. Humid air pushed out from the pockets is then
removed by an active exhaust/ventilation system.
Adequate pocket ventilation is supposed to improve steam economy (kilojoules of energy
or kilograms of steam consumed for evaporating one kilogram of water from the paper
web) of the cylinder drying section. Steam economy can be significantly improved through
heat recovery from the exhaust hot humid air. This can be recovered by air-to-air heat
exchangers, wherein the incoming ventilation air is heated by outgoing hot humid exhaust
air. But, heat recovery efficiency of these exchangers is usually low (10 to 15%). However,
through using this hot humid exhaust air for process water heating, the recovery efficiency
can be raised to as high as 80%.
Conventional mechanical drives were used for running the paper machine. The drives
included a shaft running parallel to the machine. On this shaft, wherever required, in-drives
were provided. Now-a-days sectional electrical drives are preferred over mechanical drives.
The trend is to move from adjustable voltage, direct-current drives with analog speed
regulators, to adjustable frequency alternating current drives with digital regulators. Rollers
of the sectional electrical drives are air-cooled by a system comprising of a blower and air
supply piping.
Rollers of the cylinder dryers are lubricated and cooled by circulating lubrication/cooling
oil. Epsilon Paper Mill has a centralized circulating lubrication and oil cooling system for
this purpose. This system includes a cooled lubricating oil storage tank, an oil cooler, and
pumps and pipings, for circulating the cool oil through the rollers of the cylinder dryers. Oil
cooler uses process water for cooling the oil. float dryer

In the Alpha Pulp Mill, sheet pulp is dried to 90 to 95% air-dry weight or 81 to 86% oven
dry weight level, through an air float dryer. Pulp sheet coming out from the press section is
introduced into the air float dryer chamber at the top from behind. Within the chamber, the
pulp sheet is made to make a number of passes (back to front and front to back) for drying
with hot air (impinged on both sides of the sheet) and then taken out from dryer chamber at
the bottom from the front.
Fresh air, preheated by the outgoing hot humid exhaust air, is made to enter the dryer
chamber at the bottom. After circulation for several times between passes of the pulp sheet,
the air is eventually allowed to come out from the chamber at the top through air-to-air heat
exchanger. On each pass/circulation within the dryer chamber, air is heated in a steam coil
heater and pumped through horizontal blow boxes, which issue air jets through the
openings on both top and bottom sides of the moving pulp sheet with the help of blowers.
Schematic diagram of the air float dryer is shown in Figure-4.4.9. Surface sizing
Surface sizing is meant for providing resistance against penetration by aqueous solutions,
for providing surface characteristics, and for improving physical properties like surface
Cooked, enzyme modified, or oxidized, starch is used for surface sizing. Wax emulsions, or
special resins, are often added to this starch solution. Starch is cooked either in a batch
system or in a continuous system and supplied to the sizing unit as low viscosity solution of
4 to 10% solids. In case of a batch system, mixture of water and starch is heated and
maintained at 88 to 93° C for 20 to 30 minutes, either by direct steam injection or by
circulating it through a heat exchanger. While heating by direct injection of steam, care is
taken to avoid localized boiling of the starch slurry and subsequent foaming and spatter
Surface sizing is applied at the size press, which is located usually between the last two
groups of cylinder dryers. In case of heavier papers and boards, sizing is applied at the
machine calendar stack. Size solution is taken in a water box, and with the help of a rubber
lip it is applied on the calendar roll. Solution present on the calendar roll gets applied on the
sheet at the calendar nip. Sizing may be limited to one side or applied on both sides of the
paper web.
In the size press, the paper web entry nip is flooded with the starch solution. Overflows of
this size press nip pond are collected in a pan located below the press and recycled to the
size nip pond for reuse. Sizing involves adsorption of water by the paper web, and hence
sized web requires drying at the expense of additional steam. Sizing is also associated with
frequent machine shuts.
On one of the machines of the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill, surface size is applied at a size
press, which is located between the third and last group of cylinder dryers. Schematic
diagram of this sizing process is shown in Figure-4.4.10. The system used for surface
sizing requires frequent cleaning and such cleaning involves use of process water and
generation of wastewater. Splashing of size solution from the size press nip pond is a
common problem. On-machine surface coating

Surface coating is categorized into pigment coating and functional coating. Functional
coating is similar to sizing and usually involves application of lacquer, varnish, waxes,
resins etc., as a coat on the sheet. Pigment coating on the other hand involves application of
fillers mixed with adhesives and other components.
Coatings used in the pigment coating are aqueous dispersions of 50 to 79% solids. 80 to
90% of these solids are mineral pigments, such as, china clay, barium sulfate, calcium
carbonate, synthetic silicates, titanium oxide, satin white (prepared from slaked lime and
alum), etc., and plastic pigments like polystyrene. Rest 10 to 20% of the solids are binders
and additives. Coating binders used include starches, proteins and synthetics.
Coating dispersions are prepared in the coating kitchen, and the preparation may involve
the following steps:
• Preparation of dispersions of individual coating components and storing them
• Metering the individual dispersions, from storage into a high viscosity mixer in a
preset order, and mixing
• Extracting the mixed coat into agitated holding tanks and from there sending to the
place of coat application.
Through staining, at almost every stage, foreign materials and oversize solids are prevented
in the coat.
Usually a sized base sheet is subjected to surface coating. Coating is mostly an off-machine
operation. Beta and Gama Pulp and Paper Mills are practicing off-machine surface coat
application. On-machine surface coating is practiced when light to moderate coat
application is desired and quality requirements of the coating are not very stringent. Two
separate coating stations are required for coating both the sides of a base sheet. After
coating on one side, the sheet is dried prior to coating on the other side. A wide variety of
coaters are used for applying the coat. Commonly used categories of coaters include: roll
coaters, air knife coaters, rod coaters, blade coaters, etc.
On one of the machines of the Delta Paper Mill on-machine surface coating is practiced.
After coating, the sheet is dried and calendared. For avoiding disturbance to the coating
film, instead of conventional steam cylinder drying, air impingement drying or infrared
drying is often followed. Tunnel dryers are also commonly used for drying the coated
sheets. However, in case of one-sided coating, for drying the sheet high velocity convective
hoods placed over the conventional cylinder dryers can be used. In case of infrared dryers,
the sheet is dried without bringing it in contact with anything. However, dry air is used for
driving out the moisture separated. In these dryers, coated sheet is passed over rollers, foils
or air cushion through a tunnel for drying. Calendaring
Calendaring involves pressing the paper web in one or more roll nips. Objectives behind
such pressing are to obtain a smooth surface, to achieve compaction of the web, to improve
cross-direction uniformity, etc. Calendaring is performed on a dried paper web (at 3 to 4%
moisture level) or sometimes on partially dried paper. Prior to calendaring, for ensuring
enough moisture, the web is passed over a cooled sweat roll (having condensed moisture),
or a steam shower, or moist shower is applied over the web, or moisture may be added to
the web surface by means of water boxes.
Calendaring is done in a calendar stack. Within this stack, there can be one or two heat
transfer rolls. Through these rolls hot water is usually circulated. Calendaring can be either
an on-machine activity or an off-machine activity. On-machine calendaring is performed on
the paper web usually after drying. However, in certain mills, it is carried out in the
calendar nips provided between the last two groups of cylinder dryers. Reeling
Paper product is collected on a drum reel (also known as collecting roll). A reel, known as
pope reel, is provided ahead of the drum reel but after the calendar stack, for applying
adequate tension on the sheet being collected. Cooling water is usually circulated through
the pope reel for cooling the paper web prior to its reeling. Sheeting and Baling

In the Alpha Pulp Mill, dried pulp web coming out from the air float drier is slit and cut,
and the product is obtained in the form of stacks of pulp sheets. Each of the stacks is
conveyed to a hydraulic bale press, weighed, hydraulically pressed and packaged into bales
through wrapping in brown paper and tying with metal straps. Bale press uses process
water for cooling purposes. Packaging involves consumption of brown packaging paper and
metal straps.

4.4.6 Off-machine operations and activities

Important among the off-machine operations/activities are
a) Tub sizing
b) Calendaring and super-calendaring
c) Rewinding
d) Sheeting and baling
e) Roll finishing and packaging Tub sizing

Off-machine tub sizing is practiced when better quality sizing is desired. Here the paper
web is run through a bath containing sizing solution for the size application. Then with the
help of a light nip excess size solution is removed from the paper web surface. Initial
drying of the sized sheet is mostly accomplished by hot air impingement. Calendaring and super calendaring
Off-machine calendaring is relatively less practiced. Super calendaring is almost always an
off-machine activity and it is preferred for producing highest quality printing papers. This
activity involves use of calendar nips formed by an iron roll and compressed fiber roll (soft
roll). Soft roll of the super-calendar is usually cooled by water. Rewinding
Purpose of rewinding is to cut and wind the full width large diameter paper reel into
suitable size rolls. Winding involves trimming off of the two edges of the roll. Trims
generated are pneumatically conveyed to the UTM pulper as dry broke. This activity
involves consumption of paper board cores. Sheeting and packaging

Here, the paper reel is slit and cut into desired size sheet. The generated trimmings are
handled as dry broke. The sheets are stacked together and packaged after wrapping in
packaging paper. Packaging usually involves use of wrapping paper, polyethylene sheet,
glue, etc. Roll finishing or packaging

Roll finishing may involve sealing, wrapping, crimping (folding over the wrapper overlap),
heading (gluing a circular piece over the crimped overlap), and labeling. This activity also
involves use of paper board cores, wrapping paper, polyethylene sheet, glue, etc.
knockdowns and trimmings
fiber recovered from of pulp mat from fourdrinier paper reel
machine backwater rejects
(Diffused air flotation unit) water dry roke rewinder broke
from machine

Couch pit UTM Pulper
fiber chest

fiber draining
& overflowing water
into the sewer filtrate to Gravity
backwater thickener

Broke Dump

stock silo
water pulp draining
into sewer

Deflaker Broke Chest broke to

water HD Cleaner blending chest

from dirt tank

Figure-4.4.1: Process and material flow diagram of Broke

System of the Epsilon Paper Mill
Bamboo pulp
(long fiber fraction)

Virgin sheet pulp

Pit pulper (imported)

Partially processed
HD cleaner secondary fiber Shark pulper

CM screening Centri-cleaning Double disc refiner

Gravity thickening Twin roll dewatering press

High consistency refiner

Double disc refiner


Prepared stock
to the machine

Figure-4.4.2: Process flow scheme for stock preparation in the

Epsilon Paper Mill
process processed
PAC stor. water pulp broke pulp dyes
process tank
water alum Service alum Blending process water
sol. chest Dissolving
tank tank
dye solution
Dissolving Alum stor. IVAX
tray tank

Dissolving Machine Service Storage

tank sump chest tank tank

Dye holding

process starch process water recovered dye

water DD refiner
Solubilizing Const. water out dye
tank head tank DK set powder
steam Stuff box
Dissolving process water
Cooking tank
tray starch soln.
process water
Pressure Storage
rejects screen tank

furnish to
accepts to rejects Head box fourdrinier
to whitewater

Figure-4.4.3: Process and material flow scheme for approach

system of the Epsilon Paper Mill
furnish from process water paper
head box showers in web
steam couch roll knock down &
process water HP Mill water
shower shower in Dandy steam trim showers

Free draining zone Vacuum dewatering zone Couch pit/

web transfer zone
head box X
overflows *

couch roll tray water

Whitewater tray to couch pit
Seal Pit-1 X

dragouts of knocked
down web & trims
wetting HP & chem.
showers ** showers
screen accepts defoamer
process water Returning
for foam breaking wire zone
showers for reuse
edge Bleedings
Wire Pit Clarified
water Tank
to fan pump Whitewater pickup roll
for furnish dil. silo tray water process water
over overflows
process water flows Backwater
during startup Krofta Unit to sewer

to DDR overflows compressed fiber & fines
feed chest to Sewer air
X Connected to the vacuum system * Water from Twin compartment boxes and from the Dandy Roll tray s
** Seal pit-1 overflows are collected into the backwater tank

Figure-4.4.4: Schematic process and material flow diagram of

Fourdrinier former of Epsilon Paper Mill
wetting shower

tray water
to wire pit
Uhle Box
mill water Collect.
showers tray
in the roll process water
HP shower
chemical to sewer
Pickup/ Bipin Press 3rd Press paper web to
paper web suction Roll drier section
chemical chemical
shower shower
X process water
process water HP shower
HP shower Collect.
Collect. tray
Uhle Boxes tray to sewer Uhle Box
(2 numbers)
to sewer

wetting shower wetting shower

warmwater X Seal Pit-2 warmwater

to sewer

X Connected to the vacuum system

Press Felt

Figure-4.4.5: Schematic diagram of press section of Epsilon

Paper Mill
wet vacuum boxes
of forudrinier

Cyclone Water for

dry vacuum boxes separators Cooling & sealing
of fourdrinier

pumps vacuum pump
discharge trench
Seal pi-1
suction boxes of
couch rolls overflows vent

Sump of
Cyclone vacuum
suction boxes of separators plume
suction rolls of presses

vacuum plume water

Seal pit-2
Uhle boxes


Figure-4.4.6: Schematic diagram of a typical vacuum system

6 kg/cm2
12 kg/cm2

Driers- Driers- Driers- Driers- Driers –

Clu Pack
1 to 3 4 to 7 8 to 15 16 17 to23
# # #
Condensate Condensate Condensate Condensate
rec.- S2 rec.- S3 rec.- S1 rec.- S4
to sewer
Heat hot
exchanger water

Vacuum Condensate Condensate

pump separator rec.- S1A
Condensate X Paper mat from press
Condenser section for drying
rec.- S5
Y Dried paper to pope reel
Warm water
warmwater mill water Paper moving through
for reuse condensate Condensate
to boiler Non-condensables
to sewer Steam & Flashed steam
# Dry broke is usually generated at these points

Figure-4.4.7: Schematic diagram of steam/condensate flow

sequence for the Dryers section of the Epsilon Paper Mill
ambient air slushed pulp to
steam broke dump chest
ambient air
Air heating
UTM machine
pulper backwater
condensate Air
Hot air
cool air
dry broke
Rollers of
hot air drives

Dryers area

Oil stor. Rollers of

cylinder hot humid air
dryers exhaust gases
cooling non-condensibles

vent water Condensate Direct contact

Oil cooling
system separator condenser
Heat cond. process
exchanger vented out
water hot
cooling humid air
water Vacuum Warm
pump water tank warm water
hot water for reuse

Figure-4.4.8: Schematic diagram showing auxiliary operations

and activities of cylinder dryers of the Epsilon Paper Mill
fresh dry air exhaust air
sheet pulp
air for drying & from drying
hot humid air Heat steam or condensate

hot dry air


Blower steam


steam Blower cond.


cond. Blower steam


steam Blower cond.


cond. Blower
hot air

Figure-4.4.9: Schematic diagram of air float dryer used in the

Alpha Pulp Mill
3rd group Last group
paper web Size press paper web
of dryers of dryers

Starch starch
service tank screen

washings and rejects

steam process water

maize starch

Figure-4.4.10: Schematic diagram of sizing employed on one of

the machines of the Beta Pulp and Paper Mill

Utilities and services of a pulp and paper mill is considered to include the following:
I. Extraction, treatment and supply of water
II. Generation and supply of steam
III. Generation/extraction and supply of electrical energy`
IV. Production and supply of instrumental air and plant air
V. Maintenance activities of the mill
VI. Other utilities and services

4.5.1 Extraction, treatment and supply of water Overview
The pulp and paper mills analyzed have been using the following types of waters for
meeting their water demands:
a) Process water
b) Soft water
c) Demineralized water
d) Recycled steam condensate
e) Chilled water
f) Warm water and Hot water
g) Foul condensate
h) Backwater
Raw water, obtained from either a surface source or an underground source is treated and
used by the mills both as process water and fire-water. The mills are using a fraction of the
supplied process water in the production of soft water, demineralized water, chilled water,
warm water and hot water for meeting their requirements. In addition to these, the mills are
collecting and using the steam condensates and the foul condensates generated within. The
mills are collecting the wastewaters generated within, rather than treating and disposing as
effluent, and extensively reusing as backwaters, either directly or after some level of pre-
treatment. Process water

Three of the five mills studied are dependent on nearby rivers as source of water, while the
other two are depending on the groundwater sources. The mills, which depend on
groundwater, are directly using the extracted groundwater, without any treatment, as
process water. But, the mills, which are using river water, are treating the extracted water
mainly for the removal of suspended and colloidal solids prior to its use as process water.
Water treatment systems employed by these mills include the following units:
• Intake well
• Flash mixing unit (for mixing the coagulation chemicals)
• Clari-flocculation unit
• Filtration unit (only Alpha Pulp Mill is using this unit in the production of process
water; two other mills, Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill and Epsilon Paper Mill, are using
this unit only for producing drinking water)
• Chlorination unit (employed only for producing drinking water or water for domestic
Schematic diagram of a water treatment plant (WTP) employed in Alpha Pulp Mill is
shown in Figure-4.5.1. This plant is using the following chemicals in the water treatment:
• Alum (as coagulation-flocculation agent)
• Lime (for adjusting pH)
• Chlorine (as disinfectant)
Alum and lime solutions are prepared in process water and dosed in a flash-mixing tank.
Preparation of lime solution is associated with generation of grit. Dosing of lime and alum
solutions is controlled on the basis of laboratory experimentation on coagulation-
flocculation-settling removal of suspended and colloidal solids. Clari-flocculator is used for
flocculating the destabilized colloidal solids, and for gravity settling and removal of both
suspended solids and flocs formed through flocculation. Settled matter in the clari-
flocculator is removed at regular intervals, as an underflow, through valve of the underflow
drain. Each time that the valve is opened, it is kept open till clear water starts flowing out.
Clarified water of the clari-flocculator is filtered in rapid sand filters for obtaining process
water. Backwashing of these filters generates significant quantities of backwash water.
Filtered water is stored in an underground service reservoir and supplied to the mill as
process water. Process water supply to the mill is regulated on the basis of water pressure in
the main water supply line. A small fraction of the process water is chlorinated and
supplied as drinking water. In the Gama and Epsilon mills, output of the clari-flocculator is
directly supplied to the mill as process water. These mills have provisions for supplying the
treated water also as fire-water. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, a separate reservoir, fire-water
reservoir (which is partially separated from the service reservoir for process water), is used
for storing treated water and supplying as fire-water. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, even the clari-
flocculator is connected to the fire-water system. Loss of significant quantities of water
through seepage is a common problem with water storage reservoirs and even with
filtration units. The mills have separate fire-water system which is inclusive of fire-water
pumps, fire-water distribution system, and fire hydrants. Each of the fire hydrants is
supposed to have the minimum facilities required for effectively fire fighting in the event of
any occurrence of fire. Soft water

Of the five mills analyzed, soft water is extensively used in two mills – Alpha Pulp Mill (on
the paper machine and in the approach system of the machine, beyond bleach decker) and
Delta Paper Mill (as makeup water in the cooling tower of the steam turbine).
In both the mills, cation exchange resin beds are being used as water softeners for
producing soft water. Exhausted ion exchange resin beds are regenerated by 5 or 10%
solution of common salt. Regeneration of the softener involves the following steps:
• Backwashing the resin beds with process water
• Dosing of beds with salt solution (process water is used for preparing the salt solution
of desired strength)
• Slow rinsing of the bed with process water
• Rapid rinsing of the bed with process water
Schematic process and material flow diagram of the soft-water plant of Delta Paper Mill is
shown in Figure-4.5.2. Wastewater generated during regeneration of the softner is sewered
as effluent. Demineralized Water

The mills analyzed are producing demineralized water (DM water) from process water
mainly for utilization as boiler feed water. DM water plants include granular pressure
filters, ion exchange resin beds, and degasification units. Backwashing of the pressure
filters generate backwash water.
Ion-exchange resin beds are usually arranged in the sequence of cation exchange bed,
degasifier and anion exchange bed. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, two anion exchange resin beds
(weak base anion exchange bed, WBA, and strong base anion exchange bed, SBA) are in
use. Here, degasifier is located between WBA and SBA, rather than after the cation
exchange bed.
When water passes through a cation exchange bed, all its cations (Na+, Ca+2, Mg2+, etc.)
are exchanged with the hydrogen ions at the ion exchange sites of the resin. Similarly,
when water passes through the anion exchange bed, all its anions (SO4-2, Cl-, etc.) are
exchanged with the hydroxyl ions of the ion exchange sites of the resin. With time, all the
hydrogen ions and hydroxyl ions (present at the ion-exchange sites of the cation or anion
exchange resins respectively) get replaced by the cations and anions of the water being
demineralized. As a consequence the beds get exhausted.
An exhausted bed requires regeneration for continued use in the ion-exchange process. This
regeneration usually involves the following three steps:
a) Backwashing of the resin bed
b) Running of regeneration chemical solutions (5% HCl solution in case of cationic beds
and 5% NaOH solution in case of anionic beds) through the resin beds for regeneration
c) First slow and then rapid rinsing of the regenerated beds for driving out residual
regeneration chemical solutions
Regeneration of the ion-exchange resin beds involves use of process water, degasified
water and even DM water. Also, regeneration produces regeneration wastewater.
Degasifier includes a sump, a tower and a blower. Water, which is to be degasified, is
sprayed in the tower and allowed to come in contact with the air blown inside at the bottom.
When water comes in contact with air, carbonic acid present in it gets dissociated into H2O
and CO2, and the latter is stripped out with the air.
DM water produced by passing through the cation exchange bed, degasifier and anion
exchange bed may still have traces of ions. For removing these, the DM water, especially
when it is used for producing high-pressure steam, is passed through a mixed ion-exchange
resin bed. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, which produces high-pressure steam for running the
steam turbine, mixed ion exchange resin bed is used for polishing the DM water. This
mixed bed also requires regeneration.
Schematic process and material flow diagram of the DM water plant of the Delta Paper
Mill is shown in Figure-4.5.3. This mill uses the DM water produced as boiler feed water
in the boilers which produce high-pressure super-heated steam (66 kg/cm2 pressure). Recycled steam condensate

Steam condensate is generated at all such places in the pulp and paper mills where MP
steam or LP steam is used as heating medium for indirect contact heating. If there is no
danger of contamination, this condensate is collected and returned to the boiler house for
reuse as boiler feed water. In a typical mill, over 50% of the steam consumed is used for
indirect heating. Purity and/or quality determine suitability of the condensate, so generated,
for reuse as boiler feed water. Conductivity measurements made at all such points of
generation where there is a danger of contamination are used as a basis for deciding
whether the condensate should be rejected or reused as boiler feed water.
The mills make every effort to use excess heat of the steam condensate prior to its return to
the boiler house for reuse as boiler feed water. Alpha Pulp Mill is using excess heat of the
steam condensate generated at the pre-heaters of its batch digesters, in the form of flashed
vapours, in the pre-heaters of multiple effect evaporator. Epsilon Paper mill is using excess
heat of the steam condensate, which is siphoned out from the cylinder driers, through
mixing with relatively higher pressure saturated steam in a thermo compressor for
producing LP steam, which is reused in the cylinder driers as heating medium. Delta Paper
Mill is using excess heat of the collected steam condensate for heating DM water, in a plate
heat exchanger, prior to loading the latter to the boiler as boiler feed water. Prior cooling of
the collected steam condensate is required for polishing the same in the mixed ion-
exchange resin bed.
Condensate received at the boiler house is usually polished in an activated carbon column
(for removing organic impurities) and/or in a mixed ion-exchange resin bed (for removing
the ionic contaminants) prior to its reuse as boiler feed water. For ensuring continued
availability of enough adsorption capacity, exhausted activated carbon of the column is
replaced at regular intervals by fresh activated carbon. Further, since the activated carbon
column also acts as a filter, it is backwashed at regular intervals. Just as the cation and
anion exchange resin beds, mixed ion exchange resin bed also requires regeneration. Such
regeneration involves use of HCl and NaOH solutions as regeneration chemicals, and
generation of regeneration wastewater.
Polished steam condensate is stored and used as boiler feed water in place of DM water.
Schematic process and material flow diagram of the system used, for the recycling and
reuse of steam condensate, in the Delta Paper Mill is given in Figure-4.5.3. Chilled water

Mills require chilled water for absorbing the generated ClO2 gas in their on-site ClO2 plants.
Ammonia or some other refrigerant based refrigeration systems or absorption heat pumps
are used for producing the required chilled water from process water. In the old chilled
water plant of the Alpha Pulp Mill, ammonia is used as refrigerant. But, now pulp mills
consider use of refrigeration for chilled water production as a luxury. Availability of large
quantities of steam is prompting the mills to use absorption heat pumps (in place of vapour
compression based refrigeration systems) for producing chilled water. Beta Pulp and Paper
Mill is having a lithium bromide based absorption heat pump in its ClO2 plant for
producing the needed chilled water. Schematic process flow scheme of this chilled water
unit is shown in Figure-4.5.4.
In this unit, water is used as a refrigerant. It is made to evaporate under vacuum in a mixing
tank on the shell side. Such evaporation absorbs heat from process water (which is flowing
on the tube side) and converts the latter into chilled water. Dehydrated lithium bromide is
made to absorb the generated vapour, and the resultant hydrated lithium bromide is
dehydrated through heating with MP steam and flashing out water vapour. Flashed out
vapours are condensed through cooling and sent back into the mixing tank on the shell side
for evaporation. Hot dehydrated lithium bromide is also cooled and then reused for
absorbing the water vapour coming out from the mixing tank. Warm water and hot water

Warm water or hot water is actually a preheated process water. In Alpha Pulp Mill, cooling
water coming out from the surface condenser of the FVNG handling system of the
multiple-effect evaporator, is partially used as warm water. This mill is using this warm
water for producing hot water in the blow heat recovery system through using the waste
heat recovered from the blow vapours. This warm water/hot water is mostly used in the
brown stock washing and bleaching units of pulp mill in place of process water. Warm
water is also produced at the direct contact condenser associated with the non-condensable
gases handling system of cylinder driers. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, this warm water is
collected into a warm water tank and mostly reused as shower water on the paper machine.
Causticizing unit also uses hot water for lime slacking, lime mud washing, and lime mud
dewatering. But this hot water is mostly produced through directly injecting steam into both
the process water and the foul condensate. Foul condensate

Foul condensate is generated at the following points in a Kraft pulp mill:
• At the blow heat recovery system through condensation of the vapours emanating from
the blow tank
• At the surface condenser, and at different evaporators and pre-heaters of the WBL
concentrating section of the chemical recovery plant, where flashed vapours of the
black liquor are used as heating medium
This water is relatively clean and has volatile organic compounds and mercaptans as
contaminants. This condensate is hot and can be substituted for hot water at all those points
where organic contamination and mercaptans contamination are tolerable. Most of the foul
condensate generated is sewered as effluent, and only a small fraction of it is reused at the
following points:
• In the causticizing section for lime slacking (along with green liquor) and for washing
and dewatering of lime mud
• In the displacement showers of the last brown stock washer of the Kraft pulp processing
unit in the place of hot process water Backwaters
Limits prescribed for water consumption and wastewater generation have been mostly
responsible for the collection and extensive reuse of backwater in place of the process
water. Major sources of backwater in a pulp and paper mill include the following:
• Backwater generated at unbleached decker from thickening of washed brown stock
• Backwaters generated during washing of pulp at different bleach stages and at bleach
• Backwater generated at the washing/thickening and/or dewatering operations of
secondary fiber processing and stock preparation
• Machine backwater getting collected in the second compartment of the machine
backwater tank
In addition to the above, backwater is generated at the flotation cells, screens, and cleaning
units as “rejects” streams.
All the mills analyzed are reusing these backwaters to different degrees. Backwaters of
unbleached decker and bleached decker are, mostly, reused for upstream pulp consistency
adjustments (required for the pulp cleaning and screening). Backwater of one stage of
bleaching is reused in another (provided that the reuse is compatible) in the displacement
showers of the associated rotary vacuum drum washers. Backwater generated from the
washing/thickening and dewatering is used in the hydrapulping and in the stock dilution
(required for stock cleaning, screening, deinking, etc., purposes) on the upstream side.
Machine backwater is reused, both directly, and after clarification, in the save all units on
the paper machine in different showers, in the couch pit and UTM pulper. None of the mills
analyzed is reusing backwater from flotation cells, cleaning and screening units.

4.5.2 Generation and supply of steam Sources of energy for pulp and paper mills
Pulp and paper mills are energy intensive and may depend on the following sources of
• Internally generated black liquor, bark and wood dust, and biogas produced from the
anaerobic digestion of prehydrolysate liquor
• External energy resources like coal, oil and other fuels like rice husk, bagasse, etc.
• Grid electricity supplied by state electricity boards (SEBs)
Coal and concentrated black liquor are burnt as fuels in the coal fired boilers and chemical
recovery boilers, respectively. Oil is usually used as fuel in the DG sets and limekilns. It is
also used in the boilers for start-up, and in the vehicles (meant for internal movement of
materials) for transportation. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, biogas generated from anaerobic
digestion of prehydrolysate liquor, along with oil, is used as fuel in the limekiln. Mills have
low-pressure boilers for burning bark, wood dust, trash, etc. Overview
Boiler house is one of the important utilities of a pulp & paper mill. It supports the mill
through supplying medium-pressure (MP) and low-pressure (LP) saturated steam for
utilization as heating medium. Four of the five mills analyzed have cogeneration units
(cogeneration of heat energy and electrical power). In these mills, boiler house is concerned
with the supply of high-pressure super-heated steam to the turbine generator. Extraction
type turbines are used in these mills. MP and LP steam are extracted from these turbines
and supplied to the mill for use as heating medium. Exhaust steam of the turbine is
condensed, in a turbine condenser, and supplied back to the boiler as boiler feed water.
Epsilon Paper Mill is not having a cogeneration unit. In case of Delta Paper Mill only one
type of steam is extracted from the turbine.
Boiler houses of three of the five mills analyzed (Alpha Pulp Mill; Beta Pulp and Paper
Mill; and Gamma Pulp and Paper Mill) include mainly two types of boilers: coal fired
boilers and chemical recovery boilers (use heavy black liquor, HBL, as fuel). The other
two mills depend, totally on coal-fired boilers. Four of the mills analyzed have one or more
of other types of boilers, which use bark, wood dust, ETP sludge, rejects generated from the
secondary fiber processing, etc., as fuels.
Water required for steam generation (boiler feed water) is obtained from the following
three sources:
a) Steam condensate generated at the condenser of the turbine
b) Steam condensate collected and returned from different points of the mill to the boiler
house for reuse as boiler feed water
c) Demineralized water (usually for use as make up boiler feed water)
Epsilon Paper Mill, which is not having a turbine generators does not produce high pressure
(HP) steam, and hence, the boiler is not having super heaters.
Water tube/drum type boilers are mostly used for generating steam. In the Delta Paper Mill
there is one fire tube/submerged tube boiler. The mills are having fluidized bed boiler
furnace for burning pulverized coal as fuel. Delta Paper Mill is meeting its fuel requirement
partially through burning petroleum coal (which is rich in sulfur, but has higher calorific
value and is cheaper). The boilers used are having either a single drum (steam drum) or a
two drum (steam drum and mud drum) natural circulation steam generators. These have bed
tubes, water walls, super heaters, boiler tube bank, economizer, etc.
Activities and operations associated with steam generation and supply are:
a) Reception, storage, preparation, conveyance and loading of coal to the boiler furnace
b) Pre-heating and supply of combustion air to the boiler furnace
c) Handling and disposal of flue gases
d) Handling and disposal of bottom ash and flyash
e) Conditioning, pre-heating and loading of boiler feed water
f) Fate of boiler feed water in the boiler
g) Handling and management of steam
h) Distribution of steam and collection of steam condensate
A schematic diagram showing flow of fuel, combustion air and of flue gases in the boiler of
the Delta Paper Mill is given in Figure-4.5.5. Figure-4.5.6 shows movement of boiler feed
water, steam and cooling water in the cogeneration unit of the Delta Paper Mill. Reception, storage, preparation, conveyance and loading

of coal to the furnace
Coal received by road or rail is unloaded and stored in coal yards, which may be concreted
and/or covered. Facilities are provided for transporting the stored coal to the roller
conveyor feeder. Larger blocks of coal are hammered and reduced to acceptable size prior
to loading on the conveyor. Prior to feeding to the crusher/pulverizer, coal is passed
through a magnetic separator (for removing metallic impurities), and wetted with water (for
controlling dust problems and minimizing fire hazards). Further, coal moving on the
conveyor is manually screened for the removal of stones. Crushed/pulverized coal is
screened/classified and then conveyed into a storage bin. From there, it is pushed into the
boiler furnace through burners at desired rate with the help of pre-heated primary air.
Oversize coal is recycled back to the pulverizer.
Coal handling is associated with the following two problems:
• Pulverization and screening are associated with dust problems (water sprays are usually
employed for controlling this problem), and accumulated coal dust has fire hazards
• Storage and handling of coal are associated with fire hazards (fire hydrants are provided
in the areas, where coal is being handled, to facilitate fire fighting)
• Noise and vibration problems associated with pulverization and screening Pre-heating and supply of combustion air to the furnace

Forced draught fan (FD Fan) is used to take in combustion air. In most of the cases, this air
is first pre-heated in the air pre-heater of the boiler, and then divided into two streams,
namely, primary air and secondary air. Primary air is further pressurized by primary air fan
(PA fan) and used to push pulverized coal into the furnace of the boiler through burners.
Secondary air is supplied directly into wind box, and from there, the air enters the furnace
through nozzles while fluidizing the bed (in fluidized bed boilers).
Air pre-heating is makes the combustion process more efficient. Further, through increasing
the flame temperature, it intensifies the radiant heat transfer to water walls and super-
heater, and ensures raised temperature all through the flue gas path. Proper control of air-
fuel ratio is considered very important. Increasing airflow rate is often used as a strategy for
raising the steam temperature. Rich mixture of fuel-air (high fuel-air ratio) can lead to
incomplete and smoky combustion. Handling and disposal of flue gases

Flue gases are generated in the furnace from combustion of the loaded fuel. These gases are
hot and loaded with fly ash, and also have gaseous pollutants such as oxides of nitrogen and
sulfur. Increasing combustion temperature increases concentration of nitrogen oxides in the
flue gases. Fluidized bed technology is supposed to minimize NOX formation through
lowering combustion temperature. Burning of low-sulfur coals and use of limestone as bed
material in the fluidized bed boilers is supposed to minimize SO 2 concentration in flue
gases. Boiler of the Delta Paper Mill has a provision for mixing lime with pulverized coal
and then loading it to the furnace.
Heat energy of the flue gases is recovered through heat transfer in
• Super-heaters
• Boiler tube bank
• Economizer
• Air pre-heater
In these heat transfer units, part of the dust/ash present in the flue gases gets separated from
the flue gas, through gravity settling and impaction removal, and collected into the hoppers
of the respective units. Temperature of the flue gases coming out from the last heat transfer
unit (air pre-heater) may be in the range of 135 to 180° C. Efforts are made to keep this
temperature above but closer to the dew point temperature (> 120° C) and to avoid
condensation of water vapor. Condensation of water vapour, if allowed to occur, can form
acids (with SO2 and SO3) and corrode metal structures in its contact. Elevated flue gas
temperatures are useful for providing sufficient plume rise.
Flue gases are treated for the removal of particulate matter, prior to emission into
atmosphere through tall stacks (SO2 emission rates are prescribed to be used as basis for
deciding stack heights). Flue gases are treated for the removal of suspended particulate
matter mostly by any of the following techniques:
• Passing the gases first through one or more cyclone separators connected parallely, or
through a multi-clone, and then through a fabric filter bag house
• Passing the flue gases through an electrostatic precipitator
Flue gases are drafted from the furnace through the series of heat transfer units and air
pollution control device, and pushed through the stack for emission into atmosphere with
the help of an induced draught fan (ID Fan). Slight negative pressure is usually maintained
in the furnace (in order to avoid backfiring and associated hazards), and this results in the
infiltration of 5 to 10% of additional air into the furnace.
Boiler emissions attract application of prescribed emission standards. Handling and disposal of bottom ash and flyash

Bottom ash may amount to 20 to 40% of the total ash generated. It is drained out from the
bottom of the furnace. This ash is usually quenched and wetted with water, prior to loading
in trucks and transporting for disposal.
In the mills employing fluidized bed technology, very little bottom ash is actually
generated. Here, bed material of the furnace is partially drained out at regular intervals and
replaced by fresh bed material. The drained out bed material is processed, through
screening, and then added back to the furnace as fresh bed material. Oversize material
separated during processing of drained out bed material is disposed off as non-hazardous
waste. Occasionally, due to operational defects, the bed material gets transformed into large
size lumps. In such a situation, total replacement of the bed material is practiced (one
incident, needing for such replacement, has arised in the Delta Paper Mill during one of the
study visits to the mill). Pulverized coal feeder pipes are frequently cleaned and this
cleaning also generates waste.
Particulate matter separated from the flue gases in different heat transfer units (through
which the gases are passed), and in the air pollution control device(s) is known as flyash.
The heat transfer units and the air pollution control devices have hoppers for collecting and
temporarily holding the separated flyash. Flyash accumulating in these hoppers is usually
conveyed for disposal either through sluice conveyors or through pneumatic conveyors.
In case of pneumatic conveyors (which are used in Epsilon Paper Mill and Delta Paper
Mill), flyash is first conveyed to a flyash bin and from there it is loaded to trucks for
transportation and disposal. Usually a cyclone separator is used for separating air from the
flyash being conveyed. Wetting with water is usually practiced for avoiding suspension of
flyash in air during handling (loading to trucks).
In case of sluice conveyors, flyash is conveyed in water to a dewatering bin, and from
there, after dewatering, loaded to trucks for transporting to the ash disposal site. Water
recovered during the ash dewatering can be reused in the sluice conveyor for carrying the
In Alpha Pulp Mill and Epsilon Paper Mill, some of the flyash generated is reused in brick
making, concrete lining of surfaces and in road construction. Conditioning, pre-heating and loading of boiler feed

Mills use the following three types of water as boiler feed water (the first two as boiler feed
water and the last as make up boiler feed water):
a) Condensate generated at the surface condenser of the turbine generator
b) Condensate returned from different parts of the mill (usually requires polishing prior to
c) DM water produced by the DM water plant
Presence of dissolved oxygen in the boiler feed water is associated with corrosion problem.
Hence, boiler feed water is first deaerated in an open direct contact heater (known as
deaerator) through steam stripping. Deaerators usually include a deaeration tower and a
deaerated water holding tank below the tower. Direct injection stripping with steam raises
temperature of the feed water and strips off dissolved gases. Elevated temperature reduces
solubility of dissolved gases (especially O2 and CO2).
Feed water pumps are used for pumping the deaerated feed water from the holding tank of
the deaerator to the economizer of the boiler at the desired rate and pressure. In between the
holding tank and the economizer, there can be one or more high-pressure water pre-heaters
(shell-and-tube type) for raising the feed water temperature to 170 - 280° C. MP steam is
used on the shell side of these pre-heaters for pre-heating the feed water which is flowing
on the tube side.
Alkaline pH of feed water can cause scaling problems and acidic pH can cause corrosion
problems. For avoiding corrosion problems, pH of the boiler water is maintained at around
10.5. At this pH, magnesium hydroxide can precipitate and cause scaling. For preventing
such scaling, some form of sodium phosphate (tri, bi, or mono sodium phosphate) is added
to the feed water. The phosphate added reacts with calcium and magnesium ions of the
boiler water and form flocculent precipitate which remain in suspension. For preventing
adherence of this precipitate to the boiler surfaces, modified lignin, tannin, starch, synthetic
polymers, etc., are often added to the feed water.
For controlling corrosion from carbonic acid of the condensate, neutralizing or filming
amines, like, Ellow Guard (a commercial name) are dosed to the feed water. For avoiding
water entrainment, and reducing solids carry over into the steam, defoaming chemicals are
often added to the feed water. Chemical oxygen scavengers, such as, sodium sulfite or
hydrazine, and chelating agents (for the chelation removal of metals) are often added to the
feed water. In certain cases, some of the above chemicals are dosed directly to the steam
drum. Fate of boiler feed water within the boiler

Feed water is loaded to the economizer and temperature of the feed water is raised to
almost saturation temperature. From there the water is allowed to flow into the steam drum.
From the steam drum, water flows to the headers of water walls and bed tubes through
down comers. In case of two-drum boilers, water first flows to the mud drum and then to
the water wall headers. Water from the water wall headers and mud drum raises up in riser
water tubes (which are forming the furnace water walls and the boiler tube bank) and
returns to the steam drum as super heated water through natural circulation.
Steam is generated in the steam drum through flashing of the super heated water. The
generated steam is separated and sent through primary and secondary super-heaters for
further heating and generation of superheated steam. Steam drum internals avoid
entrainment of water droplets and suspended solids and ensure that the separated steam is
free from moisture. In case of the Epsilon Paper Mill, the boiler is not having super-heaters
and steam separated from the steam drum is directly supplied to the mill as saturated
medium pressure steam. Pressure and temperature of the super heated steam are regulated
with the help of a de-super-heater, which is located in between the two super heaters,
through injecting deaerated boiler feed water.
Boiler water accumulates the impurities present in the feed water in traces and also many of
the conditioning chemicals dosed. Excessive accumulation of these can lead to scaling of
the heat transfer surfaces of the boiler. For avoiding this, continuous and intermittent blow
down of some fraction of the boiler water (from steam drum, mud drum and also from the
headers) is practiced. This boiler blow down water is a potential source for heat energy, but
contaminants level in this water may be quite high. Handling and management of steam

Super heated steam (also known as HP super heated steam) coming out from the secondary
super-heater is conveyed to the turbine generator through HP steam header. A small
fraction of the HP steam is usually tapped from this header for soot blowing purposes. Heat
transfer units of the boiler (super heater, boiler tube bank, economizer, etc.) have soot
blowers for the blowing off the soot deposited on the heat transfer surfaces with HP super-
heated steam. Usually a pressure-reducing device (PRD) is provided on the HP steam
header prior to the turbine generator. This device is supposed to serve the following two
• Adjusting pressure and temperature of the super heated steam
• Facilitating transformation of HP super heated steam into saturated MP steam and LP
steam, and supplying it directly to the mill whenever needed
Deaerated feed water is used in the PRD for adjusting pressure and temperature of the
steam. Steam distribution and condensate collection system
Pulp and paper mills use steam mainly for the following purposes:
• Heating
 Direct contact heating which generates no steam condensate (this use is considered
wasteful and less preferred because of the inability to recover condensate)
 Indirect contact heating which generates steam condensate – the generated
condensate is returned to the boiler house for reuse as boiler feed water. Some of the
cases of indirect heating are associated with the danger of condensate contamination
– contaminated condensate is sewered rather than returned to the boiler house. This
is needed because carry over of contaminants can damage automatic valves, traps,
turbines and other equipment.
• For process reactions and operations
Quantities and qualities (temperature and pressure) of steam required markedly vary from
function to function within the mill. Because of better heat transfer efficiencies, saturated
steam is preferred for heating purposes. Steam is distributed at somewhat higher pressure
than required (either as MP steam, or as MP steam and LP steam), and its qualities are
frequently adjusted as desired through using pressure reducing devices prior to making it
available for the designated function. Some of the steam demand of the mill is met by the
LP steam generated from flashing relatively higher-pressure condensate (condensate with
30 psig pressure or more) in flash tanks. In the Alpha Pulp Mill, condensate generated by
the pre-heaters of the digesters is flashed and the resultant LP steam is used in the pre-
heaters of the multiple effect evaporator. Mills can also use thermo-compressors for
transforming of steam condensate into LP steam through mixing it with relatively higher-
pressure steam. In the Epsilon Paper Mill, thermo-compressors are used for transforming
the siphoned out condensate of some of the cylinder driers into LP steam by mixing with
medium pressure steam.
A steam distribution system can be considered to include steam distribution lines, pressure
reducing valves, thermo-compressors, suitable traps for avoiding pockets in the lines, etc.
These are mostly laid overhead and adequately insulated usually by calcium silicate
insulation and aluminum jacketing on the outer side. Further, sufficient flexibility is
introduced into the steam distribution lines for absorbing thermal expansions.
Condensate return systems are of two types:
• Pressurized condensate return systems – these include the condensate lines designed for
two-phase flow. These lines usually convey condensate (usually at 30 psig or more
pressure) to flash tanks from the generation points. This conveyance does not require
pumps and controls, steam pressure is infact used as driving force for this.
• Unpressurized condensate return systems – traps of the heat exchangers discharge the
condensate into condensate receiver tanks. Steam flashing out from these tanks is
vented into the atmosphere, and the accumulating condensate is pumped to the
condensate tank of the boiler house through the condensate lines (which are not sized
for 2-phase flow) with the help of pumps and controls.
Condensate return lines are insulated and provided with traps and drains for avoiding
At certain points of steam consumption, where there is a chance for the contamination of
condensate, the condensate generated is continuously monitored, and depending on the
level of contamination detected, the condensate is either drained into sewer or returned to
the boiler house for reuse. Alpha Pulp Mill is practicing this approach for draining or
returning the steam condensate generated at the pre-heaters of the digesters.

4.5.3 Generation/extraction and supply of electrical energy

Pulp and paper mills depend on the following three sources of electrical energy:
• Captive cogeneration units
• Grid power of the State Electricity Boards (SEBs)
Pulp and paper mills mostly depend on cogeneration units for power supply. All the mills
excepting Epsilon Paper Mill are having cogeneration units. The mills rely on the SEB
Grids only for the additional power supply required and depend least on the diesel
generators for power mainly because of its high generation cost (mostly limited to peak
hours during which grid power is costlier). Captive cogeneration unit

Boilers (both chemical recovery boilers and coal fired boilers including those that burn
other fuels as well) produce high-pressure super heated steam. This steam is fed to
extraction type partial condenser steam turbine generators through a PRD for power
generation. The power generated is supplied to the mills for powering various drives and
for various other purposes. Desired quantities of MP steam and LP steam are extracted
from the turbine and supplied to the mill for heating purposes, and for process reactions and
operations. Residual exhaust steam of the turbine is condensed in a surface condenser and
the condensate is supplied back to the boiler as boiler feed water.
When turbine generator is not in operation, super heated steam is directly desuperheated in
PRD and supplied as MP steam and LP steam to the mills. When steam demand of the mill
is nil, no steam is extracted from the turbine. Circulating oil-cooling system is used for
cooling the turbine bearings, gearbox, alternator bearings, servo controllers, etc. Circulating
cooling water system is used for picking up heat from the surface condenser and cooler of
the circulating oil, and dissipating into the atmosphere.
A cogeneration unit can be considered to include the following:
• Boiler producing high-pressure super-heated steam
• Pressure reducing device (PRD)
• Extraction type partial condenser steam turbine generators
• Condenser and non-condensable gases handling system
• Circulating cooling water system
• Circulating oil cooling system process description

Pressure and temperature of the high-pressure superheated steam supplied by the boilers is
first adjusted in the PRD. This device consumes deaerated feed water for the pressure and
temperature adjustment. When turbine is not in operation, the incoming super heated steam
is de-superheated into saturated MP steam and LP steam and supplied to the mill for
heating purposes.
Superheated HP steam is fed to the turbine generator. The rate of feeding is controlled with
the help of a governor for regulating rpm of the turbine rotor. Saturated or slightly super
heated MP steam and LP steam are extracted from the turbine at the desired rate for
meeting the mill’s steam demands. Residual steam comes out of the turbine as exhaust
steam. This steam is condensed in a surface condenser. Heat generated from such
condensation is transferred to the cooling water circulating between a cooling tower and the
surface condenser. Condensate generated at the surface condenser is stored in a condensate
tank and supplied to the boiler as boiler feed water. Turbine shaft is connected to the rotor
of an alternator through a gearbox. Rotation of this rotor produces alternate current. The
governor controls rotational speed of the turbine rotor, in such a way that frequency of the
generated electricity matches with that of the grid.
Surface condenser is a shell-and-tube type heat exchanger. Exhaust steam condenses on the
shell side, while cooling water flows on the tube side. Warm cooling water, coming out
from the condenser, is cooled in a cooling tower (a mechanical draught cooling tower) and
circulated back to the condenser. Non-condensable gases accumulating on the shell side of
the surface condenser are removed with the help of two or more steam jet air ejectors
(SJAE) connected in series. MP steam (motive) is forced to flow through the SJAE for
sucking out the accumulated non-condensable gases. The steam, along with the non-
condensable gases, coming out from the first SJAE is condensed in an inter-cooler (which
can be either a spray tower type or a shell-and-tube type). Non-condensable gases
accumulating in the inter-cooler are in turn removed by a second SJAE, which also uses
MP steam (motive) for the purpose. Output of the second SJAE is condensed in an after-
cooler, and the accumulating non-condensable gases of the after cooler are vented into the
Cooling water is used in both inter-cooler and after-cooler, and warm cooling water coming
out from these coolers is conveyed to the cooling towers. In cases, where the inter-coolers
or after-coolers used are shell-and-tube type, pure steam condensate is generated. This
condensate is collected into the condensates tank and supplied to the boiler as boiler feed
Process and material flow (specially of water, steam and condensate) diagram of a typical
cogeneration unit is shown in Figure-4.5.6. oil cooling system of the turbine generator

This system includes a lube oil tank, an oil cooler, pumps and piping for circulating the
cooling oil, and facilities for drying, cleaning and filtering the circulating cooling oil.
Schematic process flow diagram of a circulating oil cooling system is shown in Figure-
4.5.7. Bearings, gearbox and servo systems, associated with the turbine generator, are
lubricated and cooled by the circulating cooling oil. Warm oil coming out from these is
collected into a lube oil tank. From here, the oil is circulated through oil coolers and filters,
back to the bearings, gearbox and servo systems.
Oil stored in the lube oil tank is also circulated through certain devices for the removal of
moisture through evaporation and particulate matter through centrifugal separation.
Circulating cooling water is used in the oil coolers for cooling the circulating oil. Leaks
may contribute to the loss of oil and this may require addition of fresh oil for makeup. With
time the circulating oil looses its properties and this necessitates occasional replacement of
the oil in circulation with fresh oil. cooling water system

Circulating cooling water system includes a cooling tower, a cooling water sump, pumps
and piping for circulating the cooling water, and facilities for producing and/or
conditioning, and adding makeup water to the circulating cooling water. This system
usually supplies cooling water to the following:
• Surface condenser of the turbine
• Inter-cooler and after-cooler associated with SJAEs
• Oil cooler of the circulating cooling oil system
Water is lost from the circulation cooling water system through evaporation and drifting.
Further, for controlling buildup of salts, a part of the circulating cooling water is blown
down, at regular intervals, as wastewater. For making up these losses, process water is
added to the cooling tower sump. Cooling tower water is also, usually, dosed with cooling
water-conditioning chemicals.
When the process water is hard water, it is softened in a soft water plant and, then, used as
makeup water. Regeneration of water softening units requires common salt (as regeneration
chemical) and process water. Regeneration of the softeners and cleaning of the associated
sand filters and/or activated carbon filters consume process water and produce regeneration
wastewater. Delta Paper Mill is using soft water as makeup water in the circulating cooling
water system. For details see Figure-4.5.2. Power from SEB grid and electrical energy system of the
Because of the cost factor, and other reasons, pulp and paper mills make efforts to depend
least on the SEB grid power. Mills have to pay for the power extracted from the grid, and
power tariff may even vary within a day, with time (tariffs may be higher during peak hours
of the day). Grid power is available as AC current at higher voltage (as high as 115 kV),
while voltage requirements of the motors used in the pulp and paper mills vary widely
(from 13 kV to below 550 V). Power generated by the captive power generation units has
relatively low voltage. Some of the devices/machinery (such as electrostatic precipitators)
used in the mills require DC current. Extraction and use of grid power, and use of electrical
energy generated on-site internally, thus necessitate creation and maintenance of a variety
of facilities, specially for metering, for stepping-up or stepping-down voltage, and for
converting AC to DC. Further, facilities are also required for ensuring protection and
safety, and for integrating internally generated electrical energy with that extracted from the
grid. A mill’s electrical energy system, in addition to the captive power generation units
(cogeneration unit and diesel generation sets), includes transformers, rectifiers, electrical
meters and monitoring devices, relay and circuit breakers, etc., as integral parts.
Transformer core, along with the insulated coils, is submerged in transformer oil. Due to
multitude of reasons, some fraction of the electrical energy flowing through is lost and
emitted as waste heat in the transformers. Transformer oil picks up this heat and gets heated
up. This heat is then pumped out and dissipated into the surrounding atmosphere through
the following mechanisms:
• Natural circulation of the transformer oil through external air-cooled tubes
• Communication of the air present, in contact with the transformer oil, in the transformer
with the external atmosphere through the air breather
When the transformer is loaded, due to elevated temperatures, inside air expands and leaves
the transformer through the breather. Insulation leaks may lead to generation of hot gases
and these gases also find their way into the atmosphere through the breather. When the
transformer is not loaded, due to cooling of the interior, cool atmospheric air moves in
through the breather. This air can bring in moisture and contaminate the transformer oil.
For avoiding this problem, moisture adsorbing substances, like silica gel, are used in the
At regular intervals, the transformer oil is tested for a number of parameters and, depending
on the requirements, the oil is conditioned (once a year or two) usually through filtration
and vacuum dehydration. Aging can lead to loss of properties and make the transformer oil
unfit for use. This necessitates replacement of old oil with fresh transformer oil. Discarded
transformer oil is disposed off as hazardous waste. Due to leaks, transformer oil may be lost
from the transformer, and for maintaining the oil at the desired level, fresh transformer oil
is added at regular intervals as make-up oil.
Overloading of transformers, contamination of transformer oil (specially with water),
obstructions to the natural circulation, and cooling of the warm oil, etc., can lead to
accidents that involve pressure build-up and explosion of the transformer, spillage of oil,
and fire. Transformer oil contains paraphenic, naphthanic, and aromatic compounds (like
polychlorinated biphenyls), and, hence, it is highly toxic. Explosions and fire are usually
associated with emission of toxic fumes and smoke.
Rectifiers are mostly associated with the electrostatic precipitators (ESP) used for the
treatment of flue gases from boilers. These are used for converting AC to high voltage DC
and supplying it to the ESP. All components of the rectifier are built into a sturdy metal
frame and the frame in turn is immersed in a transformer oil tank. Energy losses occurring
in the rectifier heat up the oil, and thermal energy of the hot oil is dissipated to the
surrounding air.
Similar to that of transformers, transformer oil of the rectifiers requires regular conditioning
and aged transformer oil requires replacement by fresh oil. Rectifiers also have accident

4.5.4 Production and supply of Instrument air and plant air

Supply of instrument air (pressurized and conditioned air) is required throughout the mill
for the pneumatic control of instruments. All the five mills analyzed have independent
instrument air systems for generating and supplying the instrument air. These systems
through two-stage compression (by oil-free centrifugal compressor) to pressurize intake air
to >100 psig pressure and condition it by reducing water content through condensation-
separation (first in an inter-cooler, after the first stage of compression, and then in an after-
cooler, after the second stage of compression) and by drying in an adsorption dryer (usually
with duel-column configuration). Water content of the air is usually reduced to a level,
which is equivalent to the dew point (of anticipated minimum ambient temperature minus
10ºF). Conditioning of the air also includes removal of suspended particulate matter (by
passing it through filters) and oil (by passing it through an oil separator). Schematic process
flow diagram of the instrumental air system employed in Epsilon Paper Mill is shown in
Ambient air is taken in through a filter and subjected to first stage compression. The air is
then cooled in an inter-cooler (by circulating cooling water) and further compressed
through second stage compression to >100 psig pressure. This compressed air is again
cooled in an after-cooler (by circulating cooling water) and stored in a receiver tank as
saturated, compressed and cooled air. Water gets removed, in both inter-cooler and after-
cooler, through condensation-separation. From the receiver tank, the air is first passed
through a pre-filter and an oil separator, and then dried in one of the two adsorption dryer
columns. Dried air is then passed through an after-filter and supplied to the mill as
instrument air. Pressure in the instrument air distribution header is maintained >40 psig,
and the air is made available to instruments at about 20-psig pressure. For ensuring only
conditioned air is supplied to instruments, instrument air distribution system often includes
additional small dryers and filters.
While one of the two dryer columns is in use, the other one is regenerated by heat
conduction technique. Electrical heaters placed in the adsorbent bed supply the heat
required for regeneration, and a small flow of dried air (2-3% of the total flow) is used for
purging the column during regeneration. Epsilon Paper Mill is having a separate cooling
tower for ensuring cooling water circulation through the inter-cooler and the after-cooler.
Epsilon Paper Mill is not having a separate plant air system. It is tapping part of the
saturated compressed and cooled air from the instrument air system at the receiver tank,
storing in separate tanks and supplying as plant air or compressed air to the mill.
4.5.5 Maintenance activities of the mill
Maintenance activities involve repairs, replacements, minor modifications and maintenance
of machinery, equipment and other infrastructure of the mill. These can also be considered
to include housekeeping and lubrication, etc. Maintenance works can broadly be
categorized into civil, mechanical and electrical works. These works are executed either on-
site, or in the maintenance workshops (mechanical and electrical workshops) of the mill. At
times, maintenance works may be got outsourced through some other organization or unit.
Execution of maintenance works may also involve outside organizations and contractors.
Maintenance requires purchase and inventorying of the inputs required in the stores of the
mill. Maintenance generates wastes and scrap which may have resale value, or which can
be recycled and reused within the mill. Hence, much of the wastes and scrap generated is
shifted to the scrap yard of the mill and stored there till it is disposed off. Maintenance
activities may require partial or even total shutdown of mill operations. Further,
maintenance may be associated with dumping and discarding of materials and cleaning of
machinery, equipment, tanks, etc. All these can also generate wastes.
Maintenance activities can be considered to include the following:
a) Civil works
b) On-site and off-site maintenance (in workshops of the mill)
c) Lubrication
d) Housekeeping
e) Stores
f) Scrap yard Civil works

These involve consumption of water, cement, sand and other building materials, electricity,
etc. Frequently, these may involve use of contractor or contract labour. Depending on the
size, civil works are associated with noise and dust problems and with the generation of
construction waste. These works may cause disruptions, obstructions and inconveniences
to the routine production operations/activities. Maintenance of tanks may require dumping
of the contents and cleaning. On-site and off-site (in the mill’s workshops) maintenance

On-site maintenance of machinery, equipment and other facilities is usually preferred over
off-site maintenance. In certain cases, machinery, equipment and other facilities may not be
compatible for off-site maintenance. Maintenance, usually, requires shutting down the
associated operations and isolation of the machine or equipment or facility that require
maintenance. Actual maintenance usually involves consumption of a variety of inputs
(including oil & grease, and cotton) and use of a variety of tools obtained from the stores,
and generates wastes/scrap. Depending on the resale value and in-plant recyclability and
reusability, the generated waste/scrap may be either shifted to the scrap yard or disposed off
directly. Once the maintenance job is over, the maintained machine or equipment or facility
is inducted back into line. This again can disrupt operations of the mill.
Pulp and paper mills usually have three types of workshops, namely, mechanical workshop,
electrical workshop and automobile workshop. Off-site maintenance in these workshops is
not much different from the on-site maintenance, except for shifting of the
machine/equipment to the workshop for maintenance and shifting of the maintained
machine/equipment back to the site. Automobiles used for conveyance of materials within
the premises of the mill are maintained in the automobile workshop. Maintenance
workshops have the basic facilities, routine inputs and tools required in most of the
maintenance jobs, and also the facilities like water closets, sinks, etc. Lubrication
Within a pulp and paper mill, many machines require lubrication. A few machines require
cooling by circulating cooling oil systems. Mills employ specialized oilmen for ensuring
lubrication (and maintenance of oil levels through lubrication and addition of fresh oils) of
all such machines according to a pre-decided schedule. Further, at regular intervals, but
relatively less frequently, lubricating oils and circulating cooling oils of different machines
are examined for their properties, and in all such cases where properties are lost, aged oils,
which are in use, are discarded and replaced by fresh oils. Discarded lube oils and cooling
oils are hazardous. These are collected and temporarily stored (in stores) till their disposal
(through sale to outside parties). For ensuring availability, inventory of lubricating oils and
cooling oils is maintained in the mill’s stores and issued as and when required for use. Housekeeping
All those operations and activities that can be improved through simple, practicable and
common sense measures can be considered as subjects for housekeeping. A good
housekeeping is supposed to minimize loss of materials, conserve water and energy
(electricity), improve working conditions and worker safety, minimize environmental
impacts, improve productivity, reduce production costs, etc. Bad housekeeping in the pulp
and paper mills analyzed can be exemplified by the following:
• Leakages in pipes and equipment, spillages, and unintended overflows of tanks/chests
• Wasteful and unnecessary use of water or running of taps, and not properly metering
• Unnecessary running of pumps, and other equipment and machinery
• Hot and cold pipes with poor or damaged insulation
• Excessive dependence on corrective maintenance and not having documented
procedures or manuals for maintenance
• Unorganized stores and scrap yards, and disposal of empty cans, packaging material,
discarded insulation material, scrap and other wastes in unintended areas
• Unsorted wastes affecting their proper handling and disposal (including their recycling
and reuse, and resource recovery) Stores
Stores procure materials required by the mill, stock them within and issue for use as and
when required. If the received materials are not properly inspected, the mill may end up
receiving damaged materials, materials with missing components and materials not
satisfying the specifications and quality requirements. If the received materials are not
stocked as per the stocking conditions recommended by suppliers, if due consideration is
not given to the non-compatibilities and dangerous nature of materials, and if safety
measures and appropriate equipment are not used while handling the materials (receiving,
transferring, stocking and issuing), the material may be damaged, accidents may occur and
workers may be exposed to dangerous materials. Overstocking of materials, non-
verification of expiration dates, and non-application of first-in first-out principle for
managing the stock, makes wastage of materials imminent. Scrap yard

All the mills analyzed have defined scrap yards. But, they are least managed and are not
sufficiently secured. The mills have very little idea about what scrap/wastes they generate,
what is supposed to reach the scrap yard, and what scrap/waste (and, also, how much of it)
is actually reaching the scrap yard. Much of the scrap/waste is in fact stored at many
unintended places rather than in the defined scrap yards. Storage within the scrap yard is
not sufficiently organized and conditions of storage required are not satisfied. Different
types of scrap/waste is not sufficiently segregated and compatibility for storing different
types of scrap/waste together is often not given due consideration. As a consequence, the
materials held in the scrap yard are deteriorate and loose their resale value as well as their
potential or suitability for in-plant recycling and reuse. Further, the stored material may
spill over and lost to the surroundings through storm water, wind, etc., and contaminate the
surrounding environment.

4.5.6 Other utilities and services

These may include:
• R&D facilities, and testing and analysis laboratories
• Water closets and sanitation facilities
• Maintenance of roads and mill premises
• Canteen
• Administrative and other office R&D facilities and testing and analysis laboratories

Each of the mills analyzed has one central laboratory and one or more smaller laboratories
(the latter for meeting testing and analysis needs of the units like, water treatment plant,
effluent treatment plant, DM water plant, etc.). Most of the R&D work and most of the
testing and analysis work associated with the control of mill operations is carried out in the
central laboratory. The other laboratories are used for routine testing and analysis jobs, that
too, of specified units of the mill. Infrastructure of these laboratories includes a wide
variety of instruments and laboratory scale units for R&D work. These laboratories are
provided with, electricity and other utilities like plant air. These laboratories consume a
wide variety of chemicals and glassware.
Samples collected from different parts of the mill are sent to these laboratories for testing
and analysis. In the process of performing the testing and analysis work and carrying out
R&D work, these laboratories generate both solid and liquid wastes. Main constituents of
the solid wastes include discarded samples, packaging materials, broken glass, paper, etc.
Because of contamination with a wide variety of chemicals, products of chemical reactions,
and residual samples dumped, wastewater generated by these laboratories is hazardous.
Additionally, these laboratories may also generate hazardous fumes, which are vent into the
atmosphere. Water closets and sanitation facilities

Mills have urinals, toilets, washbasins, and drinking water closets provided at all such
places where worker density is high. Mills also have a few emergency water showers.
These facilities are mostly connected to the drinking water supply system of the mill. Water
is needed in these facilities for facilitating their effective use and for keeping the facilities
clean and usable. Soaps/detergents and acid are also used for keeping these facilities clean
and ensuring sanitary conditions. Despite these, unhygienic conditions and wasteful use of
water are quite common in these facilities. These facilities generate significant quantities of
wastewater (also known as domestic sewage). This wastewater is either partially or fully
allowed to mix with trade effluents of the mill, or collected separately (for treatment in the
ETP along with the trade effluents or for separate treatment and disposal). Use of septic
tank –soak pit systems for the treatment and disposal of this wastewater has also been
observed in the mills analyzed.
The water taps provided in the mills are mostly used for cleaning the shop floors, for
settling dust or wetting of roads, raw materials and coal, and for irrigating lawns and tree
saplings. Even fire hydrants have been found effectively used in certain areas of the mills
specially for settling dust and wetting roads and for cleaning vehicles. Very little of the
water used in these (excepting that used for shop floor washing) is collected as wastewater.
Even this little wastewater collected mostly flows into storm water drains of the mill. Maintenance of roads and mill premises

Activities included under this head can include:
• Clearing of premises from wild vegetation
• Filling, leveling and landscaping
• Raising and maintaining lawns, plantations and horticultural plants
• Lighting of roads and mill premises
• Cleaning of storm drains and sewers
• Sweeping of roads and mill premises
These activities involve consumption of electricity and water and also manure and
inorganic fertilizers, and generation of wastes (from sweeping, clearing of vegetation, grass
cutting and pruning of trees and horticultural plants). Canteen
All the mills analyzed have canteens within the premises for preparing and serving food to
the mill workers. Canteens are supplied with groceries, cooking fuel and drinking water.
Preparation and serving of food is associated with the generation of wastewater (which is
usually rich in vegetable oils) and solid waste (which is rich in putrefiable organic matter).
The wastewater generated is usually mixed with the other domestic sewage of the mill for
treatment and disposal. Administrative and other offices

Offices of the mills have furniture, office appliances (like, computers, printers,
photocopiers, air conditioners, water coolers, lights, fans, fridges, etc.) and sanitation
facilities. Electricity, water and stationary are important inputs for the offices. Electricity is
required for lighting, ventilation, air cooling/conditioning and powering various office
appliances. Water is consumed in the sanitation facilities and in air-cooling. Offices
generate both domestic sewage and office waste (which contain paper as one of the
important constituent). The sewage generated is mixed with other domestic sewage of the
mill for further treatment and disposal.
river process
drinking water lime water
water Lime
alum Intake well prep.tank

Alum tank grit
dosing tank
mixing tank

underflow Clari-
sludge flocculator

Rapid sand
chlorine in filter
storage bullet for
back backwash water
Treat. water
Chlorinator reservoir

drinking water losses
process water

Figure-4.5.1: Schematic diagram of water treatment plant of the

Alpha Pulp Mill
process water

backwash water Pressure common salt

to drain sand filter
regeneration chemical Salt tank
wastewater to drain water
Water Salt dose
rinse water softner
to drain (resin bed) tank
backwash water
to drain

soft water

Figure-4.5.2: Schematic diagram of the soft water plant of Delta

Paper Mill
process water

Pressure Backwash
backwash water
filter water A
backwash Act. carbon
water column Backwash water
SAC regeneration
HCl Resin bed wastewater caustic & Mixed
resin bed Regeneration waste
solution HCl solns
wastewater Rinse wastewater
air & stripped
Blower Degassifier carbon dioxide Plate heat DI water
exchanger tank steam cond. from
surface condenser
regeneration of turbine generator
air waste
Resin bed backwash water Return Boiler feed Condensate
cond. tank water tank tank
rinse wastewater
solution backwash water
cond. returned
SBA from mill Boiler feed water
caustic Resin bed regeneration waste
rinse wastewater

Figure-4.5.3: Process and material flow diagram for the DM

water plant and for the steam condensate recycling and
reuse system
process water

water vapour Vapour

shell Mixing Absorption
side tank chamber

lithium bromide
condensed water Flashed Dehydrated
Vapour Bromide
condenser MP steam cooler

Lithium cooling water

cooling water
Water tank Condensate
receiving tank

Chilled water steam condensate

Figure-4.5.4: Schematic process flow diagram of chilled water

unit of Beta Pulp & Paper Mill
water for
coal wetting
coal from
coal yard
oversize coal

Storage Crusher/ Magnetic Coal

bin pulverizer separator feeder


flue gases
PA fan to chimney
combustion air
sec. air
ID fan
Super Air
Furnace Economizer ESP
heater Pre-heater
bed material
bed material boiler FD fan
& bottom ash feed water
flyash flyash flyash flyash flyash
combustion air

Figure-4.5.5: Material flow diagram for combustion air, fuel and

combustion products for the boiler of Delta Paper Mill
MP steam cooling water

boiler hydragine
Steam jet NCG Inter feed water pH booster
air ejector cooler vent SSB

Vent of
NCG cooling cond.
water Deaerator Economizer
Steam jet
After air ejector NCG
condensate LP steam

cond. MP steam
regeneration CBD
wastewater Cooling Condensor Pri. super Steam
tower heater drum

Softwater exhaust Desuper Water

plant SSB heater SSB walls
blowdown steam
turbine Sec. super Mud
process SSB heater drum SSB
water IBD

regeneration DM – demineralized water

steam PRDS LP – low pressure
chemicals to turbine MP – medium pressure
PRDS – pressure reducign devices
extracted SSB – steam for soot blowing
steam LP steam PC – condensate received from process
TC – condensate from turbine condensor
IBD – intermittent blowdown
MP steam CBD – continuous blowdown
power CW – cooling water
NCG – non-condensible gases

Figure-4.5.6: Boiler and Turbine Generator - flow scheme for

the boiler feed water and steam
cooling cooling lube oil
water water tank

Oil 25µ oil

cooler filter

Lube oil
tank Gear box
10µ oil
Alt. Brgs. filter

LP servo LP Oil
CPC filter

AOP – auxiliary oil pulp

MOP – main oil pump MP servo
EOP – emergency oil pump
CPC – current to pressure convertor Trip
LP – low pressure device
MP – meadium pressure ESV

Figure-4.5.7: Schematic diagram of the circulating oil cooling

system of the Turbine of Delta Paper Mill
instrumental air

Separator After-
air filter

inlet air cooling water
filter water

cooler Plant Pre-filter
Receiver Dryer
air Dryer
tank (regen.)
cooling cond. tanks

Compressor Compressor Oil

plant air separator

4.5.8: Schematic process flow-diagram of instrument air system

of Epsilon Paper Mill