Measuring logs is an art
Metsä Fibre’s Vilppula sawmill is one of the most modern sawmills in the world. Its state-of-the-art technology enables highly efficient and flexible production.
At sawmills, each log is measured, optimised and sawn precisely for the manufacture of products. The Vilppula sawmill uses 3D meters to measure the dimensions and shape of logs, and the insides of logs are studied using optimising X-ray devices. These indicate what products the logs are best suitable for and in which direction they should be sawn to ensure the optimal use of the valuable raw material.
“Vilppula’s competitive advantages include an optimising saw line where the process can be tailored to each individual log,” says Harri Haapaniemi. The optimising saw line captures several images of each tree and quickly turns the log into individually sawn pieces of timber.
“The smart saw line continuously optimises its operations. The saw line checks whether the product is being manufactured as it should be or whether the sawing process should be re-customised to ensure that no raw material is wasted,” Haapaniemi adds.
The entire trunk is used at the sawmill
During an ordinary working day, 100 truckloads of logs are delivered to the Vilppula sawmill, where the timber logs are converted into 45 truckloads of sawn timber. In addition, the sawmill produces 25 truckloads of wood chips for pulp production, 14 truckloads of sawdust for the pellet mill on the same site, and 11 truckloads of bark for the production of renewable energy at the sawmill’s biopower plant.
“Each production side stream is used effectively and entirely, down to the last chip of wood and grain of sawdust,” Haapaniemi explains.