The CD Laboratory for Fiber Swelling and Paper Performance has four industrial partners: Mondi, Oce, Kelheim and SIG. Research is aimed on fiber swelling and its effect on three aspects of fiber network performance. There are three key research areas.
LIQUID ABSORPTION. Here the kinetics of liquid absorption on a short timescale are investigated. This is related to the ink setting during printing, which is critical in high speed inkjet.
DIMENSIONAL STABILITY OF FIBER NETWORKS. the effect of liquid absorption on the dimensional stability of paper is addressed. The paper has to absorb the ink during printing, which may lead to deformations like buckling or curling of the paper. Modifications of fiber and paper to reduce deformations and improve dimensional stability are investigated. The expansion of fiber networks under load is also of interes for viscose fiber producers as hygiene products like tampons are taking up the liquid by expansion of the fiber network.
FIBER NETWORK MECHANICS. Primary aim of the research is to develop a fundamental understanding of the network mechanics on a fiber leven and on the network level. Micrometchanical testing of fiber properties is carried out and used to develop constitutive material models on the fiber- and on the network level. The effect of moistioning and drying process on the mechanical behavior of the paper during printing and converting is investigated in order to better understand and improve the industrial processes. Apart from that it is the aim to work out strategies to improve the mechanical performance of paper, i.e. paper strength.