Ph.D. Proposal Presentation by Andrew M. DeMaio
Wednesday, August 18, 2004

(Dr. Timothy Patterson, Chair)

"Role of Paper Structure on the Tensile Creep Compliance of Paper"


Due to the complex network structure of paper, there is great deal of uncertainty regarding its deformation behavior. Specifically, the creep compliance of paper has historically been of great interest to researchers and the paper industry. Over the past fifty years, considerable research has been conducted in an attempt to better understand this behavior. Unfortunately, not much attention has been given to how fiber-fiber bonding influences the creep compliance of paper. This is surprising, because fiber-fiber bonding is one of the most important components of paper structure. Fiber-fiber bonds act to support and distribute load between fibers in paper. In order to better understand creep compliance in paper, the influence of fiber-fiber bonding cannot be ignored.

The overall objective of this research program is to determine how this structural characteristic of paper influences creep compliance behavior. It is hypothesized that the strength of fiber-fiber bonds within paper will have an influence on tensile creep compliance. Specifically, as bond strength is increased, creep compliance will continually decrease until a minimum in compliance is reached. At this point, further increases to bond strength will not influence creep compliance. Validation of this hypothesis will be accomplished by generating handsheets with varying bond strengths and analyzing their tensile creep behavior. A battery of physical testing will also be conducted, including microscopy. A mathematical model will also be developed to explain how fiber-fiber bonding influences creep compliance. Details of the experimental procedure and preliminary laboratory results will be presented.

The results from this research will have fundamental significance as there is no current body of literature that describes how fiber-fiber bonding influences creep compliance. In addition, this research could contribute towards more efficient production of linerboard and paper building materials.