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Synthesis of Bacterial Cellulose in Low-cost Culture Medium Using Hot Water Extracted Wood Sugars

20113-10 Bacterial Cellulose Yield

Figure: Bacterial yield in hot water wood extract after 28 days of cultivation at pH (first number) and temp (second number).

Cellulose is well known as one of the most abundant biodegradable materials in nature and has received considerable interest in both academic and industrial fields. Cellulose synthesized by bacteria is of particular interest over plant cellulose for some applications due to its unique structural and mechanical properties and high purity.

Some high value applications for bacterial cellulose include biomedical applications (scaffold for tissue engineering, wound dressing materials, artificial skin), and production of membranes for high tech applications, such as diaphragms for loudspeakers.

Problem: Bacterial cellulose is currently expensive to produce and purchase however, due to the expense of the media.

Solution: Use inexpensive hot water extracted wood sugars for bacterial cellulose production.

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The first commercially viable non-toxic fiber board

2013-13 NFC board

UMaine formaldehyde-free particle board sample

This invention provides particle board or fiber board that is 100% non-toxic and 25% stronger than currently available products.  This is accomplished by replacing commonly used formaldehyde based resins with a safe, renewable nanocellulose based binder.

Benefits:

  • Reduction of health problems and related expenses ($9m – $48m per year1) caused by formaldehyde exposure
  • 25% strength increase reduces material and transportation costs
  • Nanocellulose, a renewable resource, replaces binders generally synthesized from non-renewable resources

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Real-time nanoparticle particle size monitoring device

Performance quality of many industrial materials depends on consistent distribution of particle sizes within the material.  The ability to quantify other parameters such as surface roughness, surface area, and particle shape is also desirable.  Current methods provide a static, batched measurement of limited utility.  This new method and device provides real-time measurements directly from the manufacturing line flow.

This device has demonstrated performance on paper additive products with aspect ratios ranging from 2 to 8 and short axis diameters between 100 and 500 nm.  Applications are in quality control.

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Oil and Grease Resistant Paper Coating

A stable, aqueous barrier coating composition includes: (a) prolamine; (b) cold water insoluble polymer; (c) water; (d) water-soluble co-solvent; and (e) stabilizer. The composition, when applied to a substrate, produces an article having a high surface energy and resistance to oil and grease penetration. A method of producing the article involves applying the composition to a substrate.

UMaine Tech ID  2005-08

US Patent Number 7,737,200

US Patent Pending 12/815334

Inventors:  Anthony Jabar Jr., Micheal A. Bilodeau, David J. Neivandt, Jonathan Spender

License Available

Zeolite Composite Materials for Waste Odor Control

A composite material for environmental odor control is useful in controlling odors from waste, for example, as an alternative daily cover for landfills and in composting applications. The composite material includes a fiber web and a zeolite containing metals to promote absorption of odorous has.

US Patent 8,100,605

UMaine Reference: 2008-35

Inventors: Karl Bishop, Susan Mackay, Michael Bilodeau
License exculsively to Zeomatrix

Environmentally Friendly Adhesive Bonding for Composites, Pollutant Remediation, and Dye Decolorization

PROBLEM: Environmentally friendly methods are needed to bond wood products and other composites without formaldehyde. Organic pollutants and dyes from textile and paper plants in industrial wastestreams need remediation.

SOLUTION: Using the chemically enhanced Fenton system, dyes can be remediated quickly in an environmentally safe manner. Natural lignin from wood residues can be activated to produce an formaldehyde-free adhesive system and organic pollutants in waters or soils can be broken down.

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