Influence of pulping conditions on the pulp yield and fiber properties for pulping of spruce chips by deep eutectic solvent

Alan D. Pérez, Yagnaseni Roy, Constantijn Rip, Sascha R.A. Kersten, Boelo Schuur*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

The chemical pulping of wood chips using deep eutectic solvents (DES-pulping) has emerged as an alternative technology to conventional pulping in the paper industry, allowing the production of pulp in combination with the recovery of lignin and sugars for valorization. A challenge in the development of this technology is the understanding of how the operating conditions influence the crucial pulp manufacturing parameters such as delignification percentage, pulp yield, and fiber quality. This work is focused on investigating the effect of operating conditions such as cooking temperature, cooking time, liquor-to-wood ratio, initial water content on DES, type of mixing, the addition of a pre-treatment step (pre-impregnation of DES into the wood chips) to cooking process, and DES composition (lactic acid:choline chloride, lactic acid:sodium chloride, and lactic acid:sodium bromide) on the cooking of wood chips by DES. A shortcut quality evaluation parameter (Q), defined as the product of the fiber length and the degree of delignification quantified the quality of the pulping process in a single value, shows values similar to a reference unbleached kraft pulp for cooking at 130 °C in a range of cooking times from 3 to 4.5 h at a L/W of 10:1 by using lactic acid:choline chloride DES. More elaborate property analysis on the fibers showed that several of the the quality-indicating properties of the fibers (coarseness, shape factor, fibril area, and crill index) are comparable with typical sulfite pulping fibers.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBiomass Conversion and Biorefinery
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print/First online - 21 Dec 2023

Keywords

  • Choline chloride
  • Delignification
  • DES
  • Fiber length
  • Lactic acid
  • Spruce chips
  • UT-Hybrid-D

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