Maybe it was because I was a red blooded teenager at the time, but the movie "Fantastic Voyage" starring Raquel Welch always left an impression on me. The premise was that a spy or some other character was injured and he needed some repairs to blood vessels in the brain in order to regain consciousness and spill the beans. So, Raquel (it's funny, I don't remember anyone else in the movie) and team jump on a submarine which is magically shrunk and inserted in his bloodstream. The story is about the perils of navigating this person's circulatory system.
Around here, especially under the auspices of the Light Green MachineTM Institute, I have been talking about measurements from inside the products we manufacture for a long time. It seems to me like we will reach the ultimate when we can measure the attributes of our products from inside the product itself.
Hear the news about the pulp and paper industry worldwide here first!
Listen to Pulp & Paper Radio InternationalTM regularly. This week (13 Aug 12) we interviewed Hubert Bolduc, VP of Communications and Public Affairs for Cascades, in Montreal, Quebec. You can find the show here.
I wish I could announce this had been achieved. I can't, but I can acknowledge Voith had gotten a bit closer (and no, this is not a paid advertisement, in fact, if you make something similar let us know). Voith calls it "NipVision" and it is a system that "... measures nip pressure, profile and importantly the cover temperature while the paper machine is running."
Let's continue and let Voith tell the story from their press release: "... The actual conditions in a pressed nip can now be analyzed. The NipVision glass fiber sensors are very small, non-aging, flexible and chemically resistant. They lie inside the cover, so that the roll application and dimensions remain unchanged. The sensors are so sensitive that they can detect the presence of paper in the nip.
"The NipVision measurement is unique. It is the only system which can measure temperature within the cover while the paper machine is running. This is a real benefit to the customer, given that a large number of damages result from temperature-related issues. Until now the source of poor profiles and sheet quality, increased sheet breaks and sudden roll cover damages have often been linked to a given press nip but, without any proof. With the help of NipVision such problems can be detected and hence prevented.
Savvy advertisers read Advertising Arguments.
"The information from the sensors are transmitted to a computer which plots the profile across the width of the machine and over time. With specific software the conditions in the nip are shown simultaneously and synchronously. The system is powered through induction, allowing NipVision to constantly transmit information, 24 hours a day, while the paper machine is running."
It takes something to encourage me to give away free advertising, but Voith has done it here.
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Can you provide any other examples of technology measuring any paper attributes this close to being inside the sheet? If so, please let us know about them here.
For safety this week, we expect to see great strides in safety equipment in coming years. Microprocessors are going to further aid in keeping employees safe on the job.
Be safe and we will talk to you next week.