Mondi Warsaw adds Width Line

Mondi Group needs little introduction – with an international network of paper mills and corrugated board plants, the company is one of the leading producers of corrugated base papers and packaging. The company is particularly active in Eastern Europe, with its with its Group Offices in Vienna, Austria, and London, UK.

One of its facilities in Poland is in the town of Mszczonów, located about 40 km south-west of Warsaw. The facility was originally established in 1996 and was later acquired by Mondi Group in 2004. The company is a high volume plant, producing corrugated packaging for a broad range of customers in the region.

In 2007, shortly after it was acquired, Mondi installed a 2.8m corrugator, which quickly increased the overall production capacity of the plant to around 150m sqm of board per annum. But over the last few years and following a significant factory extension, Mondi set the target to increase its production at the site by more than double, to over 320m sqm per year. Implementation of the newly extended factory and the installation of a new corrugator took place in 2023, all without interruption to production.

Efficient Performance

With standard corrugator configuration, most companies would opt for two 2.8m lines to achieve 320m sqm; however, Mondi decided to look at the viability of installing just one machine – and so began conversations with BHS Corrugated, looking at the 3.35m Width Line. Although the majority of examples of these machines are found at sheet-feeder plants where the emphasis is on lots of orders and maximum efficiency of the paper rolls, Mondi took a different view and examined the possibility of scheduling the machine for its own sheet requirements for downstream converting.

The Width line has been available in the market now for 20 years, with many successful installations around the world; accordingly, the line is matured and proven in many circumstances. Some people talk about the paper roll transportation being an issue, when moving 3.3m paper reels by truck; and then also the internal handling within the factory. Mondi have not had any issues with transportation of rolls, thanks to utilising proven solutions and formatting of reels on their trailers.

Mondi chose a 3.35m Width Line with a maximum production speed of 400m per min; this specification is capable to reach even higher production volumes than the target of 320m sqm. Beside the productivity potential, the expected savings on side trim and overall lower operating costs (compared to the operation of two corrugators) are promising.

The Width Line, which Mondi has selected, is a dedicated machine to operate in the context of an integrated box plant with outstanding production volume demand. The machine runs all combinations of B,C and E flutes and doublewall BC and EB. The range of papers used runs from 80 gsm fluting and liners, right through to 200 gsm.

“We had great feedback from our operators, many of them with more than 20 years experience; adapting to this new machine was very quick, especially with the control systems which are much more user friendly than before,” says Mariusz Sobieraj, Managing Director, Mondi Warsaw – Corrugated Solutions. “This machine is reliable and of a well proven design; it offered us an extremely fast ramp-up, with perfect board quality and maximum speed right from the start up. We are still finalising the last details of the installation of logistics systems, but it is great to be able to report that our best shift during the plant extension was 397,000 sqm of corrugated board; we are very satisfied.”

He continues, “What is also important to note is that we had a high level of support and professional project management. I’ve been in the industry for more than 20 years now, and this was one of the smoothest and fastest installations ever. I want to thank all the people at BHS Corrugated involved in our project for a fantastic, professional job.”

Great Collaboration

“BHS Corrugated is pleased that Mondi identified the advantages of the Width line and that it is the right solution to reach their production targets in Mondi Warsaw,” states Alexander Hösl, Area Sales Manager, BHS Corrugated. “The ongoing and even increasing success of the Width line is hugely promising and shows that BHS Corrugated has developed the right machine to serve our customers with outstanding production volume.”

“The company further continues to develop its key machines, also in the working width 3.35m,” adds Günter Huber, Head of Business Unit Equipment, BHS Corrugated. “For example, the Modul Facer MF-A now is available in the Width line as well and adds its main benefits which are highest flexibility and an outstanding automation level to the Width line as well. In addition to this, the Hyper Blade order change system can be implemented in the Width Line so that order change can take place at line speed.”

Hösl continues, “A Width Line dry-end can be specified either with two or three knives. With the Width Line, there are specific configuration possibilities dedicated for sheet-feeders that might require short orders, for example, as well as for box plants where volume and cost are the key drivers.”

Satisfying Outcome

During the installation stages of the new Width Line, the plant still needed to be able to operate at high levels of output. Sobieraj explains, “To keep daily production moving forward when we began the installation of the Width Line, we continued to operate the old corrugator on two shifts; then on the third shift, we dedicated the time for training and start-up of the new machine. After only a few days of training, we were already able to use board from the new corrugator to be converted into finished boxes.”

Sobieraj concludes, “We are happy with the choice we made in the Width Line. As we complete the first stages, it looks very promising, and I believe that we have fully met our expectations for the project. The Width Line affords us the highest level of converting within the facility; it is an efficient solution for a modern corrugating plant with the desired capacity of over 300m sqm. We extended the building from 19,000 sqm to 53,000 sqm and we added five new converting lines and one multipoint gluer. In total, we now have 10 converting lines and three multipoint-gluers under one roof; this was not really simply an extension project, it was a complete change of the entire infrastructure, with the automatic logistics system, relocating existing machines to new positions and so much more. In reality, we completely rebuilt the plant to meet the most modern standards.”

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