Novel investigation of the water transport in porous cellulose fibre networks using neutron imaging

Reference number 2018-04414
Coordinator Lunds universitet - Avdelningen för Hållfasthetslära
Funding from Vinnova SEK 498 000
Project duration November 2018 - November 2019
Status Ongoing
Venture Research infrastructure - utilisation and collaboration
Call Research infrastructure - utilisation and collaboration: Industrial pilot projects for neutron and photon experiments at large scale research infrastructures - 2018

Purpose and goal

It is well known that uptake of water affects the geometrical dimensions and mechanical properties of cellulose fibre network materials, such as paper and paperboard. However, the water transport processes in such materials are still not well understood, particularly not the influence of fibre swelling, sizing (water resistance treatment) and creasing (delamination treatment) on the water transport dynamics. This project aims at enhancing the understanding of in-plane water transport in paper-based materials.

Expected results and effects

The project consortium consists of Lund University and BillerudKorsnäs AB. The project will deliver valuable knowledge to the consortium’s development of physically-based material models for paper and board subjected to ambient climate loading. Such models can be used to reduce raw material and energy consumption in production of packaging materials and packages, decrease food waste in packaging value chains and replace oil-based packaging materials with renewable cellulose-based alternatives.

Planned approach and implementation

Water barrier laminated paperboard samples that have undergone different sizing and creasing treatments will be investigated. Test pieces will be subjected to controlled edge wetting, while water transport dynamics (neutron imaging) and out-of-plane swelling (x-ray tomography) is simultaneously monitored. Such experiments cannot be performed using conventional measurement methods due to insufficient time and space resolution. The intention is to carry out the experiments using the D50 beamline at the research facility of Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL) in Grenoble, France.

The project description has been provided by the project members themselves and the text has not been looked at by our editors.