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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Application of nano-structured silica technology and modified starch biopolymers into highly precipitated calcium carbonate filled mechanical grade paper Sang, Yizhou


Increasing loading level of precipitated calcium carbonate (PCC) in high value added communication-grade papers from bleached thermo-mechanical pulp (TMP) beyond the current level not only further reduces the production cost but also mitigates the shortage of good quality wood fibres. This thesis explores the possibility to retain increased amounts of PCC by taking advantage of the most recent developments in starch and nanoparticle technologies. Response surface methodology was used to optimize the addition strategy of chemicals and evaluate their effects in laboratory trials using mill samples. Empirical process models were also constructed to predict the retention and drainage results. It was found that linear high charge cationic starch S880 always resulted in highest retention for PCC preflocculation strategy and best drainage performance regardless of conventional chemical addition sequence or PCC preflocculation strategy. PCC preflocculation by starch resulted in higher breaking length and burst indices compared to the conventional chemical addition sequence. The relationship among starch properties, process conditions, and floc properties was established through the investigation of PCC aggregation kinetic and floc structure evolution to allow the judicious selection of starch for PCC preflocculation. The population balance modelling approach was adopted to describe PCC flocculation. It was found that the linear high charge cationic starch S880 is associated with lower collision efficiency; lower restructure rate and higher energy dissipation rate to break up the flocs compared to the low charge cationic starch S858. The presence of NaCl was found to affect the high charge cationic starch S880 but had no influence on the low charge cationic starch S858. The collision efficiency decreases with the increase of the shear rate for both starches. The knowledge of the floc aggregation, breakage and restructure under various process conditions is expected to enable the manipulation of the floc with specified size, strength, and structure for better retention and drainage.

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