Ensto Goes to Chile with Valmet

Ensto was chosen to deliver an aluminum cable management system to Valmet’s pulp mill project in Chile.

Valmet is delivering a pulp drying and baling, recovery boiler, and biomass boiler for ARAUCO's MAPA pulp production line. With annual revenue of five billion dollars, ARAUCO is one of the world’s biggest forest products companies. The overall value of the project is between 250 and 300 million euros. The mill is due to start operating in spring 2021.

Trusted, Finnish technology expertise

Why did ARAUCO specifically request Finnish technology companies for the project? Finnish companies are highly respected, with reliable, high-class delivery and operating models.

Valmet Technologies, Pulp and Energy Business Line project manager Jukka Huhtala, who was part of the selection team of the cable management system, says: “The reasons behind choosing Ensto as our partner were world-class expertise, a flexible operating model, and the ability to provide made-to-measure products. Valmet wanted Ensto to deliver the whole cable management system including aluminum cable ladders, luminaire rails and accessories.”

According to Huhtala, there were two more deciding factors in favor of Ensto. First, ARAUCO’s standards require aluminum to be used in all parts and, second, Ensto has a reputation as a Finnish company that is true to its word.

Efficient and flexible

The project is underway with the deliveries have sailed to Chile. Ensto made layout changes at its factory to maximize deliveries and increased its production capacity to ensure reliable and flexible delivery.

The last containers left Finland in March 2020 with a three-month delivery time. At the mill in Chile, electrical installations will begin in May and June 2020 and last about six months, allowing production of pulp to begin in March 2021.

One of the world’s largest pulp mill investments

The 2,350 million-dollar undertaking to modernize the pulp mill and to construct a new production line with an annual capacity of 1,560,000 tons, is one of the largest pulp investments in the world. The expansion project allows for ARAUCO to continue generating clean and renewable energy from forest biomass with the new biomass boiler.

Everything is big

The MAPA project is huge. The buildings are enormous. The recovery boiler’s height alone is 80 meters.  The electrical space is the size of a football field, and the building has a 40 x 80-meter area for motor control cabinets, automation cabinets and electrical cabinets with cabling.

The size of the project is also reflected in Ensto’s cable management system, which consists of tens of kilometers of aluminum cable ladders used for the recovery boiler, fluidized bed power boiler, pulp drying line and baling lines.

The size and complexity of the site demand that the level of details needed in the definition stage is high. There are millions of goods, the pipes are endless, as are the steel structures. It’s quite a challenge to make everything fit. Each part of the site demands its own detailed plan for cable management routes, cabling, and electrical rooms up until the last point. Ensto’s aluminum ladders matched customer's dimensioning and load capacity requirements perfectly.

A special project with specific circumstances

At present, the building’s concrete slabs and foundations are being cast. Because Chile is an earthquake area, the base plate must be up to six meters thick. It holds 2.3 meters of sand in between to make the upper plate flexible if and when the earth shakes.

In talks between Valmet and Ensto on the selection of the cable system local demands and the risks involved were emphasized. Also, bureaucracy is massive. "This required extremely well documented planning right from the start,” says Ensto's Area Sales Manager Mikko Kaikkonen. "A special attention was paid to ensure all the documentation was up to AURACO's standards."

Requirement of excellent corrosion resistance

One of the most important delivery criteria in the project was the corrosion compatibility of cable management system. In all areas of the new mill, and in all cables, corrosion resistance is crucial to withstand conditions near seawater. "Ensto’s aluminum products have excellent corrosion resistance in harsh environment. It's a great product for industrial sites for many reasons," says Ensto's Product Manager Jani Pesonen. "It has long dependable life-time, light weight, a good workability at site. Aluminum is very environmental friendly product since it doesn't need toxic chemical surface treatment like similar steel parts do".

Hablas inglés?

Normally, cooperation between Finns and Chileans is easy. The engineer in charge of the ARAUCO side speaks fluent English, and there are usually people present at meetings who can translate. Language issues sometimes arise, however, when dealing with local subcontractors. Valmet’s Jukka Huhtala says that even buying lunch at a local shopping mall can turn out to be nearly impossible. The only person who spoke English was found at McDonalds.

A new and significant business for Ensto

As a major, international project, the Chile undertaking is a significant new-business reference for Ensto Cable Management Systems.

Ensto has the widest product selection of cable management systems in Finland. Ensto’s aluminum product selection includes Systemal cable ladder systems, luminaire rail systems, aluminum pipes, and Ductel office trunking systems. Also, Ensto’s cable management system includes steel cable ladders, luminaire rails, cable trays and mesh wire trays, and their parts and supplies.