North Sweden Cleantech

World-Class Biorefinery for Sustainable Cellulose Production

Domsjö Fabriker is part of the Aditya Birla Group, the world’s largest of viscose fibre producer. This cutting-edge biorefinery is developing the textiles of the future for the world’s catwalks, from northern spruce trees. This is creating a sustainable bioeconomy that uses the forest’s unique renewable resources.

Cellulose is Domsjö’s biggest product, although the refinery also produces lignin and bioethanol, all of which originate from Swedish forests. The cellulose is produced from timber from conifer trees, mainly grown in northern Sweden. Domsjö Fabriker is certified according to FSC Chain of Custody, which means that all the wood used can be traced back to its origin in sustainably managed forests.

The largest area of use of viscose is in fashion and textiles, although cellulose is also found in many other products, such as medication tablets and food. All of these areas of use demand cleanliness and functionality. Development at Domsjö is driven by increasing global demand for sustainable products.

The world’s only emissions-free bleaching facility

Domsjö has bold ambitions to develop new areas of use for forest residuals and contribute to reducing environmental impact, increasing growth and creating more jobs. The products made here are all, to some extent, replacing products that would otherwise have been made from fossil oil. The production plant can convert renewable forest biomass into valuable products, while also reducing the negative impact from fossil oil on the environment and climate. For instance, Domsjö was the world’s first plant to bleach to the highest brightness without chlorine. Today, the plant is still the only one in the world that has a completely closed, emissions-free bleach facility.

Biogas a valuable by-product

The biological purification facility uses bacteria to break down organic material into biogas, making Domsjö one of Sweden’s largest biogas producers. The biogas is then used as an energy source to dry the lignin and generate electricity and steam. To reduce emissions to air, the plant uses scrubbing and electric filters to clean sulphur dioxide and particles from flue gases. The heat from the purification of flue gases is recovered and recycled into the process.

Free from fossil fuels

Domsjö’s cellulose production is powered without fossil fuels. Some 99 percent of the heat needed in the production comes from forest raw materials and fossil oil is only used for the start-up and shutdown of the boilers. Based on sustainable and traceable forestry, the products have the potential to support and drive change for a sustainable, bio-based society, in which fossil fuels and energy sources are replaced by renewable alternatives.

Significant continual transformation

In recent years, Domsjö has undergone significant change, transforming its traditional pulp mill into a biorefinery that is world class in terms of its both products and environmental performance. This has increased the complexity of the processes and equipment, offering employees stimulating tasks and strengthening the company’s vision to be a biorefinery that sets a new standard in sustainability – from forest to fashion.

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