Valmet DNAe User Interface boosts centralized plant control and monitoring

Apr 3, 2024

Nevel provides energy utilities as a service to its industrial and real estate customers. Digitalization, Valmet DNA Automation System and Valmet DNAe User Interface play an important role in doing it successfully.

Valmet DNAe User Interface boosts centralized plant control and monitoring

Nevel, an advanced utility infrastructure company, operates more than 130 energy production sites and manages over 40 district heating networks in Finland, Sweden and Estonia, producing 1.9 TWh of energy annually. The company serves almost 100 industrial and over 5,000 real estate customers with decentralized energy and circular economy solutions. With an annual turnover of EUR 150 million, Nevel employs 190 experts and is committed to climate-positive growth.

Nevel’s remote operation center experts operate and monitor 30 plants in Finland around the clock. The farthest plant is located more than 700 kilometers away in Kemi. Local staff at each plant carries out daily operation and maintenance tasks.

Advanced automation improves supply security

"Secure supply is the most important aspect for Nevel and our customers. Our customers must get what they have ordered from us. An industrial-scale automation system, support and 24/7 services play a major role in ensuring our supply security,” says Tuure Laurila, Manager, Operation Center.

Tuure Laurila, Manager, Operation Center

Over the years, Nevel has been digitalizing its energy production and offsite operations. Based on centralized data and analytics, a digital operations and maintenance platform gathers all the data needed to support business decisions, bringing significant synergy benefits and direct cost savings.

Fifteen plants in Nevel’s fleet in Finland – the largest CHP and heating plants – are operated with Valmet DNA Automation System, which is an integral part of the digital platform. The company has automated plant processes as much as possible to make them run almost by themselves.

"It has been great to see how well the DNAe User Interface at Nevel has been scaled up to operate so many plants. As the company had earlier been using DNA Operate for a long time, they have been able to compare the two interfaces. We have been listening to their valuable feedback and developing the interface further based on it,” says Arto Mäkinen, Sales Manager, Automation, Valmet.

Now virtual servers and a web-based user interface

During 2021–24, Nevel and Valmet carried out a major automation system upgrade that included a switchover to a virtual, redundant and centralized server environment and an update from the DNA Operate user interface to the new web-based Valmet DNAe User Interface.

Today, we have not a single operation station at the operation center, only virtual ones. We can access the servers through a web browser in our secured network. This adds to data security, as the servers and data are in a safe environment elsewhere,” Laurila explains.

Changes to the automation system architecture can be made remotely without the need to travel to the plant site in question.

Improved controllability and flexibility

Nevel was drawn to the opportunities that the new advanced interface offers for a centralized environment.

The fewer SCADA systems we have, the easier it is for us to control our scattered fleet. Having the same functionalities and easy-to-use user interface is a benefit for us as it improves controllability, for example, through centralized alarm management at our operation center,” Laurila says.

The innovative DNA UI extends the use of the automation system beyond traditional remote operations. Built with the latest web technologies, it comes with a secure web-based access that enables various users to access relevant information whenever they need it, regardless of their location. The new interface is fully compatible with earlier Valmet DNA system generations.

According to Laurila, the web-based access and the flexibility brought by it are the absolutely best benefits of the new interface.”

We used to have a lot of different operation stations at the operation center, but now we can monitor and operate our fleet from two redundant operating stations. We don’t need as much room and as many screens as we used to.”

When the Nevel operation center recently moved to a new location, there was only minimal infrastructure to pack.

Easy to use and create dashboards

DNA UI shows relevant information on visual, well-structured and easy-to-understand dashboards. These process and sub-process views enable the users to control the process in an intuitive and efficient way as they see the key performance indicators at a glance.

One of the DNA UI users at the Nevel operation center is Tuomo Nummela, Operations Engineer. He appreciates the UI’s clarity, graphical design and scalability.

I find the new interface easier to use than DNA Operate. It is simpler to create dashboards, too,” Nummela says.

Tuomo Nummela, Operations Engineer

The operators at the Nevel operation center learned to use the new interface quickly. Their favorite features include the centralized alarm management and the historian tool that is easier to use than in the earlier interface.

Tuure Laurila knows that, if needed, DNA UI can be equipped with even more features and analytics. However, the company is currently happy with the solution as it is. For example, it is possible to integrate proactive maintenance monitoring into the interface later.

To ensure smooth automation system operation, Nevel has a service agreement with Valmet to provide 24/7 technical system support. There is a remote connection to Valmet, too.


For more information, please contact:

Arto Mäkinen, Sales Manager, Automation



*Valmet DNA User Interface was renamed as Valmet DNAe User Interface in April 2024. It is a user interface for Valmet DNA and Valmet DNAe distributed control systems, providing a modern web-based user experience.