Novel Cost-Effective Production of High Quality Papers

Award Information
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2002-33610-12327
Agency Tracking Number: 2002-03008
Amount: $295,619.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2002
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
2403 Industrial Drive, Madison, WI, 53713
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Masood Akhtar
 () -
Business Contact
 Tim Weaver
Title: President
Phone: (559) 275-2828
Research Institution
The overall goal of the proposed program is to demonstrate the technical and scientific feasibility of combining the biopulping and fiber loading technologies at a pilot-scale simulating industrial conditions to minimize the initial research and development costs. The combined technology will save electrical energy, improve paper quality (strength and optical properties), and reduce the environmental impact of pulping cost-effectively compared to the present process of producing the same products. Biopulping, defined as the treatment of wood chips with a lignin-degrading fungus prior to mechanical pulping, is a new technology for papermaking. In this process, at least 30% electrical energy is saved and paper strength properties are improved. Unfortunately, the process reduces the brightness and opacity of the resulting paper. High brightness and high opacity are critical for the production of high quality papers, particularly when the trend in the pulp and paper industry is towards producing lightweight papers. We have also developed another new technology called fiber loading. In this technology, calcium carbonate is deposited as filler within, on the surface of, and outside the fibers. The process improves brightness, opacity, and bonding strength, and reduces energy consumption during drying. Thus, this fiber loading technology has the potential of overcoming both the problems associated with biopulping. During Phase I, the technical feasibility of combining the two newly developed technologies was established at a laboratory scale.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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