The role of local pumps distributor AQS Liquid Transfer/Axflow’s support in the South African pulp and paper industry is not limited to the pumping or transfer of pulp, but to the full product range sold and supported by AQS Liquid Transfer/Axflow across its geographical footprint. The company covers most of the pumping requirements of this industry.
The company’s contribution starts early with the supply of pumping equipment for the supply of water for the forestry industry for the irrigation of saplings. These trees are constantly planted to ensure the availability of future stock for the paper mills.
Without this forward planning and development of future stock, the paper industry would surely have a limited future within the South African context. According to industry body the Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa’s (Pamsa’s) 2019 yearly report, a total of 693 000 ha was developed with 840-million trees being planted.
The employment numbers regarding forestry, logging and related services exceeds 61 000 people, highlights AQS.
AQS Liquid Transfer/Axflow can address most of the applications within the realm of the total paper manufacturing industry with well established brands including the whole Andritz pumps product range. This includes being supported through the AQS distribution and strategic equipment services network.
These applications include process water; auxiliary materials; inks and dyes; raw paper stock; pulp; screening and washing; hydrolosis; mechanical and chemical pulp line transfer; clarified water return boiler feed pumping; high-pressure edge trimming; digester and soda recovery; black liquor transfer; evaporators; extraction from rivers; water purification and general high-pressure wash downs.
AQS Liquid Transfer also supports and services brands such as Vega Pumps, Sandpiper, Versa-Matic, NOV Mono, realAx and Andritz.
As an example, the transfer of pulp from pulper to refiner would require the use of the Andritz medium consistency (MC) series.
These pumps are already installed in all the paper mills as an industry leader, the company adds.
Andritz MC pumps convey chemical and mechanical pulp, as well as secondary fibres with consistencies up to 16% bone dry, and efficiencies up to 74%.
The greatest advantage of the Andritz MC series pump is its innovative fibre separation system – SMARTSEP – that ensures that there are no fibre losses, particularly in run-up operations and at low consistencies.
This is achieved by an additional separation impeller that returns fibre reliably to the pump and guides air out of the pump at the same time, also ensuring easy control of the degassing valve.
In refiner and screening to washing and cleaning applications the Andritz ASP double flow axial split case pumps have been optimised for use in the pulp and paper industry as headbox or cleaner pumps. These pumps achieve efficiencies of over 90%, and low pulsation, owing to their offset rotor blade design.
Andritz fan pumps from the Andritz ASP series convey stock suspensions with consistencies of up to 2%.
Boiler feed applications are addressed with the Andritz MP range of high-pressure pumps offering a variety of material and sealing options that guarantee optimal adaptability to the medium being pumped.
The high-pressure pumps in the MP pump series are designed according to a strict modular system. With this system, different design variants can be supplied according to the customer’s requirements quickly, easily and economically, without customising, and using a minimum number of components.
In 2019, a R24.13-billion contribution to the South Africa gross domestic product, as well as R6.13-billion to the South African balance of trade, were achieved in this industry sector.
The focus on recycling yielded a recovery of 1.2-million tons, of which 88% was used in the production of packaging and tissue. The recycling industry employs 31 000 people within the formal industry.
The paper manufacturing industry employs nearly 57 000 people in South Africa.
The company points out that the challenge is to have local projects supplied by local companies, as the large paper companies tend to use overseas consultants for design and supply of goods out of Europe, excluding South Africa in the revenue stream.