Wood is clean energy; even after having been processed into a product, it continues its life in recycling and as a source of heat.
In order to save nature and reduce energy costs, energy efficiency is important in all spheres of life, but especially in construction – construction accounts for about half the world’s natural resources and about 40% of its waste. As a renewable natural resource, wood offers the chance to reduce emissions and save non-renewable natural resources.
Wood’s good heat insulation, durability and breathing properties make it ideal for wood construction, in which Finland already boasts long traditions. With wood products, it is easy to built an energy-efficient house, as long as design, installation and the choice of materials are done correctly; the air-tightness, thermal insulation and wind protection of a house’s shell are all important criteria for the high-quality construction of a wooden house.
LION BoardsTM have been developed over the decades to meet the requirements of modern wood construction in terms of emissions and weather durability, and they also contribute to energy-efficient construction. Energy efficiency is an important part of the operations of Finnish Fibreboard; in addition to energy-efficient products, the saving and recycling of energy are important in all operations and development work.
Energy efficiency at Finnish Fibreboard
The manufacture of wood products is energy-efficient. In its own board production processes, Finnish Fibreboard ensures that energy is used as beneficially as possible.
In the manufacture of Finnish Fibreboard fibreboard products, we aim for energy efficiency in everything; raw materials and energy are used as efficiently as possible. The recyclability of materials, for example the utilisation of products’ energy content, is also important. Energy efficiency is also taken into account in all product and process development.
Finnish Fibreboard Ltd has signed a forest industry energy efficiency agreement, and has joined an action programme of the wood products industry, by which a company commits to the constant improvement of energy efficiency and to the promotion of the use of renewable energy sources.
With the help of an external consultant, the Heinola factory has carried out a full energy analyses, and has already started to implement their resultant proposals.
The handling of water at Finnish Fibreboard
Finnish Fibreboard emphasises environmental protection by applying modern evaporation technology.
An evaporation plant built at the company’s Heinola factory in 2006 processes the wastewater generated by the board production processes and burns the dry matter residue as energy. In that way, energy and environmental savings can be achieved in board manufacture.
The super-dry matter concentrate that is a by-product of evaporation has clear thermal value, as it contains wood-based substances and so is naturally organic. Because of this, it can be used as a fuel at the power plant located in the same Sahaniemi industrial area. Thanks to the new cleaning plant, Finnish Fibreboard’s Heinola plant now has closed process water circulation.
Operating principle of the evaporation plant
- The process waters are pre-filtered, so that the microfibre material left over can be removed before evaporation.
- The filtered process water fraction is pumped to the first stage of the evaporation plant, which is based on MVR (mechanical vapour recompression) technology.
- The vapour produced in the MVR process is pressurised by the fan.
- The pressurised vapour, which is warmer than the wastewater circulating in the process is fed to heat exchangers, where it condenses and the latent heat is transferred back to the flowing wastewater on the other side of the heat exchanger, where some of it evaporates.
- The vapour created is fed further to the fan. The MVR evaporator thus works in the same way as an energy-efficient heat pump in.
- The dry matter content of the wastewater increases in the first MVR stage of the evaporator plant from 4% to about 35%. This concentrated wastewater is then pumped into the second stage of the evaporator plant, called TVR (thermal vapour recompression).
- Near the TVR evaporator, the final concentrate is pumped by induced circulation to the tubular heat exchanger, where it is heated.
- The concentrate flows into a tank at a lower pressure, where the concentrate is further concentrated (flash effect) to a dry matter content of about 45%.