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Cellulose

, Volume 9, Issue 2, pp 115–125 | Cite as

Effect of cellulase-assisted refining on the properties of dried and never-dried eucalyptus pulp

  • O. García
  • A.L. Torres
  • J.F. Colom
  • F.I.J. Pastor
  • P. Díaz
  • T. Vidal
Article

Abstract

The effect of two different cellulases on the hornification phenomenon,in which drainability (Schopper–Riegler method) and mechanical propertiesdiminish when pulps are dried, was studied. The enzyme applications testedincluded a commercial enzyme named ComC (Pergalase A40 from CIBA) and alaboratory enzyme from Paenibacillus sp. strain BP-23namedCelB. Industrial never-dried Eucalyptus globulus bleachedkraft pulp was split in two halves and one of them was dried at ambientcontrolled conditions. We compared enzyme effects on both pulps (wet pulp anddried pulp) before and after PFI mill refining. Enzyme applications increaseddrainability (Schopper–Riegler method) and water retention value (WRV) ofnever-dried bleached pulp, although this did not imply an enhancement of themechanical properties of paper. Cellulase treatment of dried pulps, bycontrast,gave rise to increased drainability and WRV and also to improved mechanicalproperties. The changes caused by drying became less significant after enzymeapplication. Handsheets from CelB-treated dried pulps showed an improvement oftensile and burst indexes while tear decreased. The effect produced by CelB canbe considered a biorefining step. In fact, by means of enzyme treatment withCelB the properties of paper manufactured from dried pulp equalled theproperties attained from wet fibres, with the exception of tear index. Changeswere also found in surface fibre morphology, such as flakes and peeling due tocellulase treatment. The surface modification of fibres with cellulases givesrise to better bonding properties and a closer structure of paper. The finalconclusion is that treatment with cellulases could compensate the hornificationeffect and lead to an important saving of refining energy. The novel enzyme,CelB, was the most effective in improving paper properties and counterbalancingthe hornification effect caused by drying.

Biorefining Cellulase Enzyme Eucalyptus pulp Fibre surface modification Hornification Optical microscopy Paper properties 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • O. García
    • 1
  • A.L. Torres
    • 1
  • J.F. Colom
    • 1
  • F.I.J. Pastor
    • 2
  • P. Díaz
    • 2
  • T. Vidal
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Textile and Paper EngineeringPolytechnical University of CataloniaTerrassaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology, Faculty of BiologyUniversity of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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