An Approach for Feedforward Model Predictive Control of Continuous Pulp Digesters

Authors: Moksadur Rahman, Anders Avelin, Konstantinos Kyprianidis (Mälardalen University, Västeras, Sweden)

Journal: Processes (2019)

Abstract: Kappa number variability at the continuous digester outlet is a major concern for pulp and paper mills. It is evident that the aforementioned variability is strongly linked to the feedstock wood properties, particularly lignin content. Online measurement of lignin content utilizing near-infrared spectroscopy at the inlet of the digester is paving the way for tighter control of the blow-line Kappa number. In this paper, an innovative approach of feedforwarding the lignin content to a model predictive controller was investigated with the help of modeling and simulation studies. For this purpose, a physics-based modeling library for continuous pulp digesters was developed and validated. Finally, model predictive control approaches with and without feedforwarding the lignin measurement were evaluated against current industrial control and proportional-integral-derivative (PID) schemes

Key words: Pulp and paper, kappa number, pulp digester, modeling, feedforward, predictive control

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