Montes del Plata: Strengthening drying line performance

Running a pulp mill successfully requires that all processes, technology, and equipment work in harmony across the entire system with the whole chain being only as strong as its weakest link. Metris DryQ™ is the new intelligent solution from ANDRITZ, designed for monitoring data from drying systems, helping to strengthen a vital link in the production chain to optimize the drying performance.

A new mill-wide concept from ANDRITZ is being well received by pulp producers around the world. Called SYNERGY™, the concept involves a long-term service agreement, typically lasting three years, which at its core provides ANDRITZ expertise from process and equipment in cooperation with its customers to achieve agreed targets.

As part of this agreement, ANDRITZ provides a broad approach to helping its customers improve their production and profitability by offering advice and expertise on operation, process, equipment, automation, IIoT, and maintenance activities, either mill-wide, or in specified mill areas. The concept of Metris DryQ optimization processes is right at the heart of the SYNERGY concept.


One of the mill areas that ANDRITZ has been concentrating on its endeavours to maximize efficiencies across pulp mill production is the drying line. DryQ is an intelligent solution applied across the fiberline to gather information on the whole process so as to maximize drying line efficiency. However, this is not simply a digital add-on to gather data; DryQ is much more than that. ANDRITZ uses its human capital in the area of drying expertise to sort through the relevant data and turn the acquired information into a valuable asset for maximizing efficiency.


Michael Bergmann, ANDRITZ Director of Digitization, Pulp Drying says, “DryQ consists of several elements which, when combined with deep knowledge of the process, can make a real difference to the efficiency of the drying line. We have a number of software programs that contain filters to sift through the data and determine what information is needed and what is not. But the key element is the expertise to interpret the information gathered from the data in the right way and derive the solution for the customer to allow decisions to be made in the process. This really is a way to apply our expertise and knowledge and share it in an efficient way.”


One of ANDRITZ’s key customers, the ultramodern Montes del Plata mill located in Uruguay, recently signed a three-year SYNERGY agreement. The mill will see all three main areas of its production and maintenance looked after by ANDRITZ: process and equipment, automation, and maintenance. The installation of DryQ is part of the SYNERGY agreement.

The mill is a complete ANDRITZ turnkey operation.


Jukka Helttunen, Technical Manager at Montes del Plata, says of the SYNERGY agreement, “We want to achieve world class results at this mill and the SYNERGY concept from ANDRITZ is the ideal way for us to achieve that goal. One of the areas we identified as in need of improvement under the umbrella of the SYNERGY contract was the drying area, so hence we decided that DryQ would be a solution to fit our needs.”

In September 2019, DryQ was installed and applied to the mill’s two drying lines. The agreement included remote support and assistance, and access to ANDRITZ experts, with the aim of boosting the dryers’ performance and stabilizing the process.


”Since the very beginning, we have been very impressed with ANDRITZ’s professional and transparent approach to the DryQ project.”

Director Fiberline
Montes del Plata

“We now have a drying line that is performing in a much more stable and efficient way. It gives us a lot of confidence to have ANDRITZ experts right with us as we deal with any challenges that may arise,” concludes Machado.