MACON, Ga. (News release) -- Via Separations, an MIT spinout company developing process intensification systems to reduce energy intensity, announced its first successful pilot with Graphic Packaging International (GPI) for black liquor concentration. "This pilot represents the first successful implementation of membranes in the black liquor process in history," says Jeff Butler, Center of Excellence Lead at GPI. "Others have attempted this before, and we were skeptical at first that it could work. But Via turned it on, and it just ran."
Via's cross-industry filtration system is capable of reducing the energy required to separate chemicals by 90% and capital expenditures by 50%. Via's solution is inherently modular and flexible to demand, and this pilot utilizes commercial size filtration units.
"When the Via technology is installed at full commercial scale, it's going to be a huge success for our industry. We are thrilled to have Via Separations as a partner and are eager to continue our collaboration in the future," says Mark Daniel, VP of Pulp & Power for GPI.
"With such a supportive and visionary partner in Graphic Packaging, we were able to achieve a leap forward for an essential American industry and a decarbonized future," says Brent Keller, CTO of Via Separations. "We are extremely motivated to work with Mark and the team at Graphic, who constantly push us to deliver more, faster, and challenge us to produce the best product possible."
"This successful pilot represents the first step towards deploying membrane-based filtration systems across pulp, chemical and petrochemical separations - representing an enormous opportunity to reduce 12% of US energy consumption. The pulp and paper industry is a vital industry, and we are proud to build upon the shoulders of the industrial giants," says Shreya Dave, CEO of Via Separations. "We could not have reached this milestone without our team, partners and advisors. Our special thanks to the Biorenewable Deployment Consortium (BDC), Alliance for Pulp & Paper Innovation (APPTI), and the Department of Energy (DOE)."
"It is a win-win for everyone when a technology like Via's comes along, and we believe it is one of the processes that are needed to help make this renewable industry even more competitive," said Harry Seamans, retired pulp and paper industry manager and co-founder of BDC.
About Via Separations:
Based in Watertown, MA & spun out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Via Separations eliminates energy use in industrial processes, enabling pathways for a more sustainable, resource efficient future. With its core filtration technology, Via has applications across industrial manufacturing. Via is a venture-backed company with investors such as The Engine, Safar Partners, Prime Impact Fund, and MassCEC, along with federal and state support such as the National Science Foundation. More information is available on its website at www.viaseparations.com.
About Graphic Packaging:
Graphic Packaging International, LLC, a direct wholly-owned subsidiary of Graphic Packaging International Partners, LLC and the primary operating subsidiary of Graphic Packaging Holding Company (the "Company") (NYSE: GPK), headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, is committed to providing consumer packaging that makes a world of difference. The Company is a leading provider of fiber-based, sustainable packaging solutions for a wide variety of products to food, beverage, foodservice, and other consumer products companies. Additional information about Graphic Packaging, its business and its products is available on the Company's web site at www.graphicpkg.com.