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Western Michigan University unveils paper manufacturing machine unique to North America

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (From news reports) -- Western Michigan University unveiled a new paper manufacturing machine that is the only one of its kind in North America.

Western Michigan University President Edward Montgomery and representatives from 28 paper industry partners met with faculty and students Tuesday, April 16, 2019 at the facility on the Parkview Campus for the unveiling of a pilot-scale multi-ply paper manufacturing machine.

The machine, moved and donated from the U.S. National Institute of Science and Technology, enables the university to test and develop two-ply paper used in a wider variety of products, says Lon Pschigoda, general manager of Western Michigan University's Pilots Plants. The university's operation provides an outlet for companies to test new paper types, fibers, chemistries and equipment on a smaller scale, without having to interrupt their own production lines.

"Eighty to 90 percent of the time the machine will be used to conduct research, to run trials," Pschigoda said. "It's a great place to make a mistake or test a new product. You can make many more iterations per day on our small system and collect much more data in a shorter period of time."

The new machine will replace an older model the university used in the former McCracken Hall, which was installed in 1958, says Deanne Puca of Western Michigan University's Office of Marketing and Strategic Communications.


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