WBPI’s Focus on Italy takes us near Venice and the town of Concordia Sagittaria, where the Pessa family has been developing machine and plants for wood size reduction for over 50 years.

In the 1950s, brothers Bruno, Luciano and Silvano Pessa founded F.LLI Pessa, a metalworking company that initially operated in machines for agricultural applications (such as excavators and mechanical shovels).

They then expanded to other machinery in the industrial sector (automation coke ovens, ironworks), before moving in the early 1960s to the first discontinuous flakers for wood size reduction in the particleboard industry, a sector in which it still operates today.

In the 1990s, the company went on to become Pessa Impianti SRL, led by Luciano and Silvano Pessa. Today, the company reins are in the hands of the daughters of the two founders, preserving the DNA of the family-run company for another generation.

Pessa’s main activity is technology for the production of flakes, mainly used in particleboard, MDF and OSB manufacturing, with solutions covering the areas of wood feeding, wood reduction, flake reduction, flake screening, storage and extraction systems and flake mixing. Particle size reduction of wood and preparation of flakes, chips and fibre has become its focus.

As well as panels factories, the machines are also supplied to biomass plants, pellet production plants, sawmills, the paper industry and other plants dealing with wood. Pessa has come a long way since the 1950s – its technology is now working in 43 countries around the world.

LIGNA Attendance

At Ligna it was exhibiting its technology to wood industry visitors, explaining the operations of its knife ring flakers among other machines. Pessa supplies three types of knife ring flakers for the production of flakes for core and outer layers of boards, obtained by chips processing. The type TC features rapid knife changeover, while the type TCC features the knifeholder impeller change and lastly the type TK has the knifeholder fixed drum change. Production capacity of the technology ranges from 2,000-10,000kg/hour.

Several models of machines are designed for transformation of dry flakes, shavings, sawdust into fines, microflakes of adjustable sizes suitable for the outer layer of boards, for the production of products with extra fine, smooth, homogeneous and compact surface and for the production of wood flour. Production capacity for these is 1,700- 9,400kg/hour.

Universal drum chippers for the production of chips from whatever type and size of wood are designed, Pessa says, to be flexible and feature technical adaptability.

The outfeed chips have a size and quality suitable for use in wood based panels, the paper industry, wood waste recycling and energy plants (biomass, pellets, briquettes, wood flour). Universal drum chipper production capacity ranges from 3,000- 13,200kg/hour.

Universal Discontinuous Flakers

Pessa is putting a high emphasis currently on its Universal Discontinuous Flakers, marketing them on the basis of reliability and high performance, designed to comply with different production requirements and able, the company says, to produce good quality calibrated flat flakes and OSB strands with superior mechanical characteristics.

Pessa says the performance of its discontinuous flakers allows companies to eliminate working shifts with the resulting reduction of plant operating costs.

“A single machine is able to produce flat flakes already suitable to the final use,” Pessa said. “That means reduced manpower, reduced maintenance costs and less energy consumption.”

One of the markets Pessa has been focusing on is Russia's OSB industry. Pessa has signed an agreement for exclusive distribution of Universal Discontinuous Flakers in Russia – an agreement which has led to the delivery of two machines in 2018 and two further orders there in 2019.

Of no less importance to Pessa are chipping lines, since they represent the alternative to a poor availability of the raw materials and allow recovery of wooden wastes that can be reintroduced in the production of value-added composite materials in form of fibre and micro particles or used as an alternative source of energy.

As well as the knife ring flakers covered earlier in this article, fibre preparation technology manufactured by Pessa extends to hammer mills – versatile technology that has also found widespread use in pellet production plants.

And further applications are possible to produce fines for board surfaces – obtained by a range of refining mills that can be used for production of wooden powder too.

Other Technology

Besides wood processing and fibre production machines, PESSA can supply a wide range of systems and equipment with complementary functions to improve their performance and for the complete automation of the lines. The wood feeders only require one operator to work this feeding system that permits better cleaning of wood. “It means an improvement of flake quality, the longer life of tools and remarkable savings in labour and energy,” Pessa told WBPI.

The product range includes all handling equipment for the product obtained from wood processing machines and storage units of various capacity and dimensions. High capacity storage units with screw extraction systems allow for a continuous and regular flake flow.

The production range also includes wood shaving machines (obtained from roundwood) type PL for animal bedding soft flakes production.

To recap, Pessa’s full list of production machinery for the wood industries includes:

  • Machines for the primary working of wood and recovery of wood wastes as: discontinuous flakers for PB and OSB, drum chippers, wood shaving machines for animal litters
  • Machines for particle comminution as: knife ring flakers, hammer mills, refining mills
  • Systems for wood feeding, handling and Storage
  • Extraction, storage and mixing systems for flakes, chips, sawdust
  • Auxiliary equipment.

“Pessa is a partner to design and work out the realisation of new lines and machinery for customers and also for the upgrading of existing plants to meet changing production needs,” the company said.

Its consolidated experience of more than 50 years in the industry is something being emphasised by Pessa for security and peace of mind for customers and their important investment decisions. Lastly, Pessa’s reconditioning service is offered to customers for parts subject to heavy wear, such as cutterheads, rotors and impellers.

“This ensures high efficiency and top performance of the machines,” it said.