Protacon purchases interest in Inray

By Protacon | March 28, 2018

Technology company Protacon has purchased a substantial part of Inray Ltd, a Finnish company supplying X-ray technology based measurement systems to power and thermal plants. Together, Protacon and Inray can now offer a complete solution for fuel measurement and analysis to bioenergy-fired thermal plants, for example. The solution is fully automated and provides real-time data.

“The fuel quality influences, among other things, the efficiency ratio, emissions and fuel pricing. Ultimately, customers will save money when they pay only for the actual fuel and not for water or sand contained in it. At thermal plants, savings can amount to 0.5 million Euros on an annual basis,” said Inray’s CEO Janne Kovanen.

Continuous automatic quality measurement speeds up the process and makes it notably more accurate. If samples were previously taken as individual random checks, now it is possible to go through the entire fuel mass and accurately analyses its quality.


Large market, many applications

The great number of thermal plants in the northern European region create a large market for the complete fuel management solution. Protacon and Inray have also identified other potential applications for the technology. In the pulp industry, it can be used to measure chip moisture and size and to find foreign objects, such as stones. 

“If the chip moisture and size are known, the amount of chemicals used in the pulp cooking process can be cut down thereby reducing energy consumption and achieving significant cost savings. At waste combustion plants, X-ray technology would help identify material on the conveyor belt enabling separation of non-combustible material from waste,” said Kari Pellinen, CEO of Protacon Technologies Ltd.

The solution for the management of solid fuel supply chains, Protacon Once, has pervaded the Baltic countries, Russia, Central Europe and the U.S. In Finland, the solution has become the market leader. Now, customers can benefit from an even more advanced system in which manual steps have been completely eliminated.

“Until now, analyzing fuel and raw materials for their moisture content, energy value, etc. has required laboratory work. Inray's technology enables accurate real-time analysis of fuel mass during unloading. This streamlines the overall process and reduces risk of errors,” Pellinen said.