Fiber Modification

  • Pratima Bajpai


The use of enzymes in papermaking is becoming an established technology for promoting reduction in refining energy, developing paper characteristics, and enhancing productivity. The carefully selected and formulated enzyme-based products modify fiber to deliver a number of process and product-related advantages. In many cases, the mechanisms and effects are unique and specific to enzymes and which conventional papermaking additives have as yet to deliver. Machines making tissue and fine printing paper grades using bleached pulps and requiring refining have achieved considerable savings in energy consumption, substitution of long fiber by short, and savings in starch use. The cellulase-based products are added to the fiber streams with specific physicochemical conditions ideal for optimum enzyme activity. Studies have also been conducted on packaging board machines using recycled fiber. Trials have shown interesting and commercially viable results. These include increase in production rate and decrease in steam consumption due to better dewatering and increase in post-press solids. Furthermore sheet strength increased and filtrate water quality also improved. Employing xylanase or cellulase to improve the drainage on a pulp or paper machine has been pursued by several mills with the objective to increase the production rate. The presence of endoglucanase activity is a prerequisite for improvement of drainage of recovered paper by enzymatic means. Cellobiohydrolase and Xylanase activity act synergistically with the endoglucanase to improve its effects. Endoglucanases enhance dewatering by hydrolyzing the amorphous hydrophilic cellulose, which is the main constituent of the fines formed during refining. By applying purified enzymes on specific regions of the cellulose fibers, the desired part of the pulp could be modified for a particular enzyme application.


Enzymes Refining energy Productivity Cellulase Xylanase Recycled fiber Drainage Endoglucanase Cellobiohydrolase Beatability Refinabilty Fiber modification 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Pulp and Paper ConsultantKanpurIndia

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