Full Filter Press Refurbishment

Boliden’s zinc smelter in Kokkola, Finland, is the second largest in Europe. More than 20 filters are used for zinc filtration and four of them needed to be checked, refurbished, and upgraded to meet the nowadays operation and safety requirements.

Products & Solutions

Project overview

  • Customer & application: Boliden Kokkola, Zinc production
  • Task: Modernisation and safety upgrade of four horizontal filter presses, type Novatek MKAF1200
  • Results: Extended reliable filter press operation and high capacity with improved safety.

Boliden Goes for Maximum Safety and Improved Performance

The four horizontal press filters have been in operation since 1997. To keep them in top shape and as safe as possible, Boliden Kokkola) decided to modernise them. The filter type is Novatek MKAF1200. Since Novatek was acquired by Roxia, Roxia is providing all filter-related services to all users of Novatek filters. New filter presses of the same type are nowadays known as Roxia Filter Presses (FP).

For us, it made the most sense to give the modernisation of old filters to a company who has the knowledge of the equipment.

– Juha Hakala, Mechanical Maintenance Manager, Boliden Kokkola.

Roxia handled a filter refurbishment at Boliden Kokkola. Image after the modernization.

Filter Refurbishment Phase

Roxia handled planning, resourcing, and scheduling for the refurbishment of all four filters and proved to be a trustworthy partner also when it comes to filtration. “Installation and commissioning have gone as planned on all filters and did not have any significant impacts to the ongoing filtration process,” states Janne Korkiakangas, Project Engineer, Boliden Kokkola. The filters were refurbished according to the customer’s wishes: one after another, starting in May 2020 and finishing in October 2021.

After the modernisation: among others, refurbishment included transparent sliding door and plate washing device.

New Roxia plate shifter and cloth washing device makes filter operation more reliable and brings better process results.

The upgrade included the following key components:

  • Replacing safety curtains with transparent sliding doors including safety interlocks.
  • Mild steel plate hangers were replaced with stainless steel.
  • Replacing automation system with new Siemens automation with modern safety features.
  • Installation of improved plate shifter and cloth washing device.
  • New pneumatic control cabinets for valves.
  • Entire refurbishment of hydraulic cylinders.

As planned, refurbishment of each filter press took about two weeks. “Actually, three filter presses were refurbished faster than the first one. As with any project, there were some challenges in the installation phase, but nothing that could not have been resolved along the way. We did our best to finish the project as planned, causing no delays to Boliden Kokkola,” adds Petri Viskari, Project Manager, Roxia. Planning, resourcing, and scheduling have worked smoothly and cooperation during the project was flexible.

New Roxia plate shifter and cloth washing device makes filter operation more reliable and brings better process results.

Roxia provided completely new Siemens automation solution for all four filter presses.

Safety Improvements

Because the filter presses date back to 1997, customer’s requirement was to revise safety features and update them to today’s safety standards. After careful safety review, Roxia suggested to improve the perimeter safety and new industrial automation system.

An important safety improvement was new control system. The old system was outdated and needed to be replaced. Earlier, only a single component failure could have stopped the whole filter, because some parts are simply no longer available.

The new Siemens automation system is more reliable, has better user interface, improved safety features offering better plant field automation and all components are easily available. Since 1997, the technology has rapidly developed and among the rest, brought safety improvements which are nowadays standard in such systems. Overall, Roxia delivered a complete modern automation solution including hardware, instrumentation, and software.

Roxia provided completely new Siemens automation solution for all four filter presses.

Before the refurbishment the black curtain in the far-left corner was all that used to separate the filter process from the surroundings.

Perimeter Protection for Better Operator’s Safety

Another important safety feature was newly installed perimeter protection. It replaced old safety curtains with safety interlocked doors that prevent access to the possibly hazardous areas during the filter’s operation. When any of the doors open, the filter automatically stops. At the same time, it still allows enough room for safe maintenance and operator can see filter operation through transparent doors.

After revised and upgraded safety features, they protect the operators and the filters from failures and unintended misuse.

Before the refurbishment the black curtain in the far-left corner was all that used to separate the filter process from the surroundings.

Our customer: Boliden Kokkola

Boliden’s smelter Kokkola, located on the west-coast of Finland, is the second largest zinc smelter in Europe and the largest industrial employer in Kokkola.

The total amount of zinc products in the portfolio is about 40, containing both pure zinc and tailored products for certain customers and customer segments. Zinc is used in cars, bridges, batteries, light poles, construction – in everything that our modern lifestyle requires.

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If you have something on your mind, just let us know! We are more than happy to answer all your inquiries.


Danie Groenewald

Area Sales Manager South Africa

+27 10 590 8374

Kauko Tanninen

President, Russia & CIS

+7985 226 14 91

Russell Beaumont

Senior Service Manager, Filters Australia

+61 408159305

Ettienne Joubert

Sales Engineer South Africa

+27 (0) 81 030 1015

Sun Lin

Area Sales Manager, General Manager China

+86 21 52679628

Lyle Henson

Environmental Technologies Sales Manager North America

+1 443 695 9510

Dan Stenglein

Sales Director North America

+1 667 500-2591

Ronald Gaspar

Technical Service Manager Peru, Colombia

+51 9 7973 5424

Robert Parks

Filter Sales Manager North America

+1 410 636 2250

Maureen Brown Briceño

Sales Manager South America

+56 9 7740 0878

Yury Beloborodko

Director, Filtration MMM & CEEC Russia & CIS

+7 921 959 46 20

Sergey Petukhov

Technical Director Russia & CIS

+7 495 726 57 41

Don Kitchen

Filter Spares Sales & Service Manager North America

+1-410-636 2250

Jesse Saira

Area Sales Manager Nordic and Baltic Countries

+358 44 276 2338

Dirk Otto

Sales Director Central Europe

+49 (0) 2102 420 707

Victor Ortega

Area Sales Manager Asia Pacific

+61 499 156 590

Juho Uusitalo

Area Sales Manager Eastern Europe

+358 40 680 4396

Kimmo Angeria

Head of Field Services, Roxia Automation

+358 400 104 977

Eduardo Paredes

Sales Director South America

+56 994 991 561

Markus Saloniemi

CEO, Roxia Automation

+358 40 571 9520

Fernando Henriquez

Sales Director Peru


Petri Kiljunen

Petri Kiljunen, Regional Director, Middle-East and Mediterranean