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Modeling Pressure Distribution in a Belt Press During Manufacture of Fiberboards

Patrick Pettersson, T. Staffan Lundström, Elianne Wassvik

Abstract


When forming fiberboards, a large amount of air is evacuated from the dry fiber mat and the fibers are subjected to forces generated by the flow. If the forces become too strong, the fiber mat bursts and the process stops with financial loss as a result. A simplified model for the pressure field during the pressing has been derived, by starting from first principles. This model indicates that the velocity of the belt can be increased as long as the length of the press is increased, or the viscosity of the penetrating fluid is decreased in a prescribed manner. The model furthermore suggests that the pressure distribution will be unaffected by variations in the basis weight of the fiber mat as long as the basis weight is matched with an equal change in the density of the fibers. Furthermore, by numerically deriving the pressure field as a function of boundary conditions, it is shown that minor variations in the pressure at the nip may result in huge differences in the pressure at the entrance of the press. In a validating procedure, it is shown that model parameters can be adjusted in a physically reasonable way to obtain acceptable agreement with experimental data, but also that the model must be considerably improved in order to obtain quantitative conformity.

Keywords


Modeling;fiberboard manufacturing;pressure distribution;belt press

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