Pinola Topp

Tall Oil Production Plant

PINOLA TOPP is a robust and continuous process for the production of Crude Tall Oil (CTO) from kraft soap that enables the highest possible yield and CTO quality. The key unit processes include a dynamic mixer and reactor for improved acidulation, and a highly efficient centrifugal separator which both contributes to low acid consumption and very high yield, above 97%. The residence time of the PINOLA TOPP process is less than 2 minutes which enables the production of CTO with the highest possible acid number; thereby ensuring maximal resin and fatty acid content in the produced CTO. The PINOLA TOPP process will increase a pulp mill´s CTO revenues by maximizing volumes while ensuring the highest possible CTO-quality classification.


Kraft Soap Technology

The Pulp and Paper industry, with the production of bio-based materials at its core, is the undisputed world leader in sustainable production. The industry is constantly evolving to further improve sustainability of its operations while simultaneously increasing the added value of its products. Increasing the revenues from byproducts is an ongoing global trend among pulp mills. For example, new investments in the production of lignin and methanol at kraft pulp mills.

At HEAD Engineering, we specialize in processes used for production of the byproduct Tall Oil. Today this byproduct of the kraft process is undergoing increased attention and revival as the world´s most sustainable biobased oil. However, due to its history, many pulp mills still use conventional technology for the production of Tall Oil. Many mills using older technologies operate with poor yields and poor Tall Oil quality, particularly when pushing incremental production, which hinders their capability to realize the full value potential of this byproduct.

HEAD Engineering have developed modern and fully automated processes for the separation of kraft soap from black liquor and the production of Tall Oil from soap. These unique and patented process designs are sorted under the collective name PINOLA and are all based on highly efficient separation technology – centrifugation.
A separator, using centrifugal forces 5000 times stronger than gravity, can achieve almost 100% separation of tall oil and soap, while requiring only a fraction of the footprint compared to mills using very large tanks for gravimetric separation. This enables soap and tall oil processes with much higher yields and lowers production cost.

Pinola BLiSS 
Black Liquor Soap Separation

PINOLA BLiSS is a newly developed process for effective separation of soap from black liquor using centrifugal separators. The process has been thoroughly validated at a Swedish mill using a full scale separator. The PINOLA BLiSS process will render black liquor principally free from soap (< 1g CTO / kg BL DS). Less soap going to the recovery boiler means more capacity for pulp production. A normal pulp mill limited by the recovery boiler capacity can increase the pulp production by 2-5% after installing BLiSS. Further, PINOLA BLiSS will produce a highly concentrated soap stream with a CTO content of up to 60%. The PINOLA BLiSS process will increase the amount of soap available for tall oil production by approximately 10% compared to traditional gravimetrical separation using large tanks.

Pinola BLiSS


Black Liquor Soap Separation Skimming PINOLA BLiSS Skimming is a process for improved soap handling. Skimmed soap is washed with fresh black liquor and further concentrated up to a CTO content of 60%.
The washed and concentrated soap will improve the conditions for tall oil production resulting in increased capacity and reduced acid consumption. Runnabillity problems associated with fouling in the CTO plant
are minimized or completely eliminated.


Analyze 15 minutes soap content measurement PINOLA Analyze is an easy and fast analytical method for measurement of soap content in black liquor and CTO content in soap. The measurements are performed using a bench scale laboratory centrifuge and require only about 15 minutes. No hazardous chemicals are needed for the measurements.