A Quality Improvement Team Seeks the Perfect Chip

Article

Deal, John R.; Eisner, Roland F.   (1991, ASQC)   ITT Rayonier, Inc., Jesup, GA

Annual Quality Congress, Milwaukee WI    Vol. 45    No. 0
QICID: 9692    May 1991    pp. 501-505
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Article Abstract

ITT Rayonier's Jesup Pulp Division received customer complaints due to serious pulp quality problems. Investigations of the customer complaints indicated a correlation between high bark content in wood chips and production problems.

A thirteen-member Chip Quality Improvement Team was formed to determine which woodmill operations were critical to chip quality and identify ways to make improvements. The team's goal was to implement six chip quality improvement ideas: (1) Optimize chip bark content and woodmill production rate; (2) Improve communication between key operations; (3) Provide real time feedback to control debarking rate; (4) Install television cameras on the debarking drum; (5) Improve chip sampling and testing equipment; and (6) Train operators in in-process chip bark testing;A capability study established the optimum throughput required to produce high quality, low bark chips, resulting in production leveling, which then led to a net increase in the amount of chips produced. Engineering and technical representatives of the team also improved chip testing equipment that provided faster, more consistent analysis of chip samples. The equipment was networked with the existing pulp mill computer data handling system, which allowed the team to maintain run charts for chip bark content.

Within one year, wood chip bark content was reduced by 33%. Consequently, customer satisfaction increased, and orders returned to their former levels.

Keywords

Chemical and process industries,Customer satisfaction (CS),Manufacturing,Quality Improvement Team (QIT),Case study


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