How can we make intelligent and efficient use of data?

How can we make intelligent and efficient use of data?


Modern production plants generate vast amounts of data and information that can provide added value for companies, particularly in industry, if they are used effectively and systematically. However, the companies need digital high-tech and specific knowledge for this purpose.


Metris DryQ – an innovative system from ANDRITZ for pulp drying. It analyzes the relevant data, links it to expert knowhow and derives improvement measures from it. The Montes del Plata mill in Uruguay is already using this solution successfully.

Interactive map: department of Colonia in southwestern Uruguay

Three in one

Metris DryQ is a digitally supported solution to make fiber production more stable, more efficient and more resource-saving. Montes del Plata has been using it since September 2019. “We use software and algorithms to organize production data, then we correlate the two and draw our conclusions,” says Michael Bergmann, Director of Digitalization in the ANDRITZ Pulp Drying department.

“However, the decisive factor is the specialist knowledge needed to correctly interpret the information gained from this data. We use this information as a basis on which to develop specific enhancements to the industrial process.”

Successful operation of Metris DryQ at Montes del Plata increases performance in the drying line

Successful operation of Metris DryQ at Montes del Plata increases performance in the drying line

© Montes del Plata
Metris Performance Center

Metris Performance Center


Metris DryQ uses all of the measurements available and also works with sensors that are positioned along the drying line and record and transmit thousands of additional measurements. This data is gathered and aggregated centrally.

If a problem comes up, for example if the pulp web breaks, ANDRITZ is notified. The information contains the main operating data logged before the problem occurred. In the next step, ANDRITZ experts from the process, automation, electrical installations or machine hardware fields study the parameters and the operating information.

Together with the customer, they analyze the reasons for the problem, suggest countermeasures and – even more importantly – submit proposals as to how such issues can be avoided in future.

Metris DryQ can also be used to monitor the process in a production line: This is how an ANDRITZ customer detected several problems, for example when he wanted to ramp up production again after a shutdown for annual maintenance.

Some of the not fully automated settings had changed. Using the Metris DryQ data, the original process parameters were identified and could then be restored very quickly. Without this information, restoring the settings would probably have taken days.


Metris DryQ

Metris DryQ features various intelligent and innovative solutions, such as baling line analyzer software, broke detection systems and remote assistance.

Group 11

Analysis software:

Baling line analyzer

  • Performance monitoring
  • Alarm management
  • Line comparison
  • Reporting option
Group 16

Smart systems:

Broke detection system

  • Fast and reliable restarts by means of laser scanning after cleaning the dryer
  • Identifying broke and instructing the operator so that it is removed as quickly as possible
  • User-friendly interface to locate remaining pieces of broke
Group 3 (1)


Remote assistance

  • Experts from various ANDRITZ locations are connected to the customer on site, directly and in real time.
  • At the mill site, the customer’s operators are equipped with HoloLenses and other devices.

“Significant improvements!”

Jukka Helttunen and Gabriel Machado were both involved in establishing Montes del Plata. In an interview, the Technical Manager and the Drying Line Supervisor explain how they use DryQ and why the mill profits from this tool.

Jukka, what prompted Montes del Plata to use DryQ?

JH/ – We were wondering how to get the best out of the plant in the long term. That’s what the system helps us to achieve. It’s a tool we use to optimize pulp production continuously and in the long term, in close coordination with ANDRITZ experts. What counts for us in the end is having production operations that are as stable and efficient as possible.

What specifically are you looking to achieve, Gabriel?

GM/ – Sometimes there is a web break in the drying line, for example, and we have to stop production and set things up again. That costs both time and money, so obviously, we want to avoid this at all costs. Otherwise, it is generally about providing recommendations for the line. For example, we were wondering recently how we could reasonably reduce the geometry of the headbox and adapt it to a higher output.

How do you do this in practice?

GM/ – On the basis of the production data aggregated by the system, we discuss the problems with the ANDRITZ experts, who are sometimes scattered all over the world. Generally, this takes place in online meetings. On some occasions, the underlying problem is quite simple, but every now and then it is complex. Our goal is to avoid having the same difficulties again and again and to continue the learning process. We get to the root of the problem, take measures to counteract it, and develop benchmarks step by step to achieve better results.

Gabriel Machado, Drying Line Supervisor at Montes del Plata

Gabriel Machado, Drying Line Supervisor at Montes del Plata

© Montes del Plata
Jukka Helttunen, Technical Manager at Montes del Plata

Jukka Helttunen, Technical Manager at Montes del Plata

© Montes del Plata

And do you succeed?

JH/ – We are seeing significant improvements in terms of the availability of the entire mill. Our impressions and experiences are positive.

What do you think is the reason for this?

GM/ – The sensors and the software that ANDRITZ uses to analyze the data are well engineered and coherent. However, personal interaction is almost more important. Within the team, we communicate openly and honestly. No-one tries to grab the limelight, and we know and trust one another.

Speaking of trust: What about data security?

JH/ – We are using a series of IT measures to protect the plant effectively against any manipulation from the outside. We give the ANDRITZ experts various levels of privileges that are subject to a time limit. Transparency is of paramount importance. Moreover, the Metris DryQ servers are right here in Montes del Plata. We alone have sovereignty over the data – and that is important to us as well.

Montes del Plata
© Montes del Plata

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