Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 40

millwise | AMERICAN EAGLE

Ready to Compete for
Another Century
It took a phoenix to let an eagle soar again.
GRAEME RODDEN

Greek mythology describes
the phoenix as the bird that is cyclically regenerated or reborn; typically the
phoenix rises from the ashes. In this story,
the phoenix is an eagle-American Eagle
Paper Mills, Tyrone, PA. It began Project
Phoenix in 2013 to "reinvent the mill's critical infrastructures by primarily focusing
on efficiency."
Energy-water, steam, electricity-was
the main target. The mill was built in 1880
and is one of the oldest operating paper
mills in the US. Management realized
improvement had to be made to ensure
the mill's future; the project also provided
immense environmental benefits.
The mill now produces 85,000 tpy of
uncoated printing and writing grades using
a 100 percent recycled furnish. There are
two 1940s-vintage paper machines (Pusey &
Jones), which have gone through numerous
upgrades over the years. "There's not much
original stuff left," notes American Eagle
CEO Mike Grimm.
Its main market segment is recycled copy
paper. American Eagle can take advantage
of many government (local, state, federal)
regulations that mandate the use of recycled
content in the paper that "tax-supported
offices" buy. "We've grown rapidly in this
segment recently," Grimm says. The mill
also produces general offset, envelope, and
some colored paper grades, as well as private label paper.
Project Phoenix addressed multiple
issues facing the mill. Grimm lists the three
biggest risks:
* Power boiler;
* Steam turbine generator;
* Proprietary frequency converter.
The mill's frequency converter was the
only one of its type in the world. As Grimm
points out, "If it had failed, it would have
been catastrophic for continuity."
40

Paper360º

There were also issues with the insurer,
which wanted changes to the electrical system.
A consultant had done an EPC study earlier, but came in with a price tag of US$15-16
million. Management decided to design the
project in-house, although a general contractor was hired. "We had a great team with
great buy-in at all levels of the organization,"
Grimm says.
The process began in 2013 with a lot of
evaluation. The mill was spending about
US$12 million annually on steam, power
generation and purchased power. As the team
went through the mill, it started to discover
it had opened a "can of worms" because of
the equipment inefficiency (too big, too old).
Basically, the three main pieces-boiler,
steam turbine generator, old static frequency

converter-were due to fail and if any one of
the three did, the mill would need to be shut.
"We also realized how much steam we need
to run the paper machines and this put us in
the direction of a package boiler," Grimm adds.
The project team studied multiple alternatives and made technical decisions by early
2015. To get through the capitalization of the
project, ownership had to be restructured. In
June/July 2015, orders for the larger equipment were placed.
Construction started in February 2016.
Luckily, an existing building was able to
house the new package boiler. The new
Babcock & Wilcox natural gas-fired package boiler looks like it was made for the space,
Grimm says. The new boiler and frequency
converter were turned on in mid-July 2016.

American Eagle CEO Mike Grimm.

SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2017

www.tappi.org


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Paper360 - September/October 2017

Setpoint
Over the Wire
PPI Top 100
The PPI Top 100
The Emerging Bioeconomy
TAPPI Keynoters on Bioproducts and Sustainability
Agenda 2020 Technology Projects Target Energy Efficiency, Sustainability
A Biorefinery Industry is Emerging
Partnering with Paper for Sustainable Biomaterials
RISI’s 2017 Latin American CEO of the Year
American Eagle Paper Mills: Ready to Compete for Another Century
New Pilot Plant is a Vision in Tissue Technology
Drying Optimization at RDM Ovaro
Papermaking Best Practices with Vacuum-Dewatering Systems: Part 1
Bioaugmentation in Pulp and Paper Wastewater Treatment
TAPPI Journal Summaries
Specialty Paper Trends
TAPPI News
ASPI News
Index of Advertisers
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - INTRO
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - bellyband1
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - bellyband2
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - cover1
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - cover2
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 3
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 4
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 5
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Setpoint
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 7
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Over the Wire
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 9
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 10
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 11
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 12
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - The PPI Top 100
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 14
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 15
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 16
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 17
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 18
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 19
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - TAPPI Keynoters on Bioproducts and Sustainability
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 21
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 22
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 23
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Agenda 2020 Technology Projects Target Energy Efficiency, Sustainability
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 25
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 26
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 27
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - A Biorefinery Industry is Emerging
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 29
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 30
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 31
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Partnering with Paper for Sustainable Biomaterials
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 33
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - RISI’s 2017 Latin American CEO of the Year
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 35
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 36
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 37
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 38
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 39
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - American Eagle Paper Mills: Ready to Compete for Another Century
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 41
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 42
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 43
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 44
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 45
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - New Pilot Plant is a Vision in Tissue Technology
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 47
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 48
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 49
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Drying Optimization at RDM Ovaro
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 51
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 52
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 53
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 54
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 55
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Papermaking Best Practices with Vacuum-Dewatering Systems: Part 1
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 57
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 58
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 59
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Bioaugmentation in Pulp and Paper Wastewater Treatment
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 61
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 62
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - TAPPI Journal Summaries
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 64
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 65
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Specialty Paper Trends
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 67
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 68
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 69
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 70
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - TAPPI News
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - ASPI News
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - 73
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - Index of Advertisers
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - cover3
Paper360 - September/October 2017 - cover4
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