Sappi is a global provider of sustainable woodfibre products and solutions. Miron has collaborated with Sappi for years on various capital work within their Minnesota and Michigan plant locations. In late fall 2016, Sappi’s Cloquet, MN plant approached Miron to assist them with a critical headbox replacement on their #12 paper machine. The team wanted to approach this project differently, using technology and a more collaborative approach that Miron coined Virtual Process Integration (VPI). The project began with scanning existing conditions within and around the project area. Key trade contractors were brought into the project early, and the engineer and OEM provided models of the building, equipment models and infrastructure. In addition to being the construction manager, Miron served as the model integrator, ensuring the engineer, OEM and subcontractor disciplines were contributing to this living 3D model. Conflicts/clashes between the pieces of equipment, building and infrastructure were identified prior to engineering completion, eliminating costly mistakes and wasted time in the field. The team also created a 4D schedule which linked all of the demolition and installation activities to the 3D model so all project team members had an hour-by-hour visual of what activities needed to happen and in what order. Finally, all of the information from the 3D model was entered into a laser tracker which was used for equipment layout and the final alignment. Ultimately, this VPI collaborative approach and technology provided cost savings, streamlined the installation process and ensured a much more predictable and high quality install.
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