Mesoporous structures in never-dried softwood cellulose fibers investigated by nitrogen adsorption
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- Kimura, M., Qi, ZD., Fukuzumi, H. et al. Cellulose (2014) 21: 3193. doi:10.1007/s10570-014-0342-z
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Nitrogen adsorption was used to characterize mesoporous structures in never-dried softwood cellulose fibers. Distinct inflections in desorption isotherms were observed over the relative vapor pressure (P/P0) range of 0.5–0.42 for never-dried cellulose fibers and partially delignified softwood powders. The reduction in N2 adsorption volume was attributed to cavitation of condensed N2 present in mesopores formed via lignin removal from wood cell walls during delignification. The specific surface areas of significantly delignified softwood powders were ~150 m2 g−1, indicating that in wood cell walls 16 individual cellulose microfibrils, each 3–4 nm in width, form one cellulose fibril bundle surrounded with a thin layer of lignin and hemicelluloses. Analysis of N2 adsorption isotherms indicates that mesopores in the softwood cellulose fibers and partially delignified softwood powders had peaks ranging from 4 to 20 nm in diameter.