Alkaline Paper Advocate

Volume 9, Number 2
Jul 1996


[Note: The classification number that follows each entry is an aid to indexing and finding citations by subject. Addresses of publishers like TAPPI or Pira can be found in the list of Useful Addresses sent out with the last issue. Pira, a British research association, publishes Paperbase Abstracts (PBA), and can supply the full text of the publications they abstract, for a price; fax them in Surrey, UK, at 011 44 1372 802239, or send an e-mail message to]


Print and Paper Buyer's Handbook of Terms. Tunbridge Wells, UK: Whitmar Publications Ltd, 1996, 56 pp. £11.20. (PBA Abstract 4033, 1996)

This is the third edition of Paper Europe's handbook of Terms, with a new title. The glossary of terms is followed by a section on paper calculations and British trade tolerances. (1C1)


Three IBM-compatible diskette versions of the 1996 Lockwood-Post's Directory can be ordered from Pulp & Paper offices in San Francisco (415/905-2728). The first diskette gives mill and/or headquarter information and costs $725; the second, the "Mill/ Headquarters Deluxe," contains the same information as the first, plus paper machine specifications, and costs $995; the third covers converting plants and costs $725. They are apparently produced as sales and marketing aids for paper industry suppliers. A demo disk is available. Requires 2 MB of RAM and DOS 3.0 or higher. (1C4.4)


"To CD or Not to CD," by J. Bloom. Printweek, 27 Oct. 1995, pp. 34-35 (PBA Abstract 2185 (1996).

MoDo (a Swedish paper company) has a new interactive CD ROM for paper buyers to help them choose which paper to buy. Papers can be searched for by characteristics such as finish, bulk and price, and those that satisfy the criteria can be displayed. Samples can be selected via a modem, with delivery within 24 hours. They are also considering possibilities of the Internet. Wiggins Teape are also considering a CD ROM and the Internet. Arjo Wiggins Fine Papers have already produced a CD ROM. (1C4.5)


Paper Buyers' Encyclopedia Disk System, Version 6.0, has been completely redesigned for the 1996/97 release. It is a Windows program, with sections for paper, company, and reference information. The paper section can be searched by category (classification), brand name, company name, and any paper attribute. The company section lists information on the mills, converters, and paper suppliers in the database, and can be searched by mill, converter, supplier and companies that list grades. It can be sorted geographically or by corporate name. Thus, one can easily find information about the mill that makes a particular grade of paper, and which local merchants handle it--a valuable service for the smaller consumer.

Minimum system requirements: 386 processor, Windows 3.1. Cost: $150. For more information call Grade Finders Inc. at 610/524-7070 or fax 610/524-8912. The disk system is offered in addition to the printed versions of the Competitive Grade Finder Pocket Edition ($30) and the Paper Buyers' Encyclopedia ($95). (1C4.5)


"Watermarks--Part III: A Systematic Classification," by L. Rodes. Papel v. 56 #12, Dec. 1995, pp. 56-57 (in Portuguese; PBA Abstract 4559, 1996)

In 1986 the typology proposed by Peter Tschudin was adopted by the Institute of Paper Historians. Other criteria for classification are the period in which the watermark was made (prior to 1450, 1450-1600, 1600-1750 and 1750 onwards) and where it was made. (1E4)


"Who Made This Rubbish?-The Historical Investigation of Particular Twentieth-Century Papers," by Peter Bower. IPH 6. Jahrgang, Heft 1, 1996, p. 12-20.

This paper is a serious and important description of the research involved in trying to find out where a sheet of paper came from, so that its makeup can be determined from mill records, thus avoiding a long and expensive analysis. The author is concerned here with the needs of paper conservators, but forensic scientists would also find it useful. (1E4)


"Effects of NOx Exposure on Paper: The Role of Free Radicals," by J.K.S. Wan and M.C.Depew. J. Pulp & Paper Science v. 22 #5, May 1996, p. J174-J177.

The authors' driving interest is in free radicals (molecules or atoms with one unpaired electron). Here they report the results to date of their study on color reversion and permanence in a radical-containing atmosphere, using a rapid, potentially on-line method using a pulsed microwave-induced acoustic (MIA) sensor that indirectly measures relative depolymerization of paper. In order to monitor free radicals, which are normally hard to observe because of their reactivity and short life, they reacted the stable free radicals NO and NO2 (conventionally referred to as NOx) with paper in an acoustic cell and observed their stable reaction products using electron spin resonance. (The free radicals they are actually interested in are oxy radicals, which are prominent in autoxidation reactions, but they were too reactive to observe directly.)

The kinetics of water sorption and desorption in the presence of NOx was studied to give a way of getting at permanence.

The filter paper samples did not lose brightness, and no free radicals were picked up by the ESR, but they became noticeably brittle. Lignin-containing paper noticeably yellowed, showed production of new stable radicals on the ESR, and became brittle. The results, the authors say, are hard to interpret, and more work is necessary. (3B1.23)


"Damaging Effects of Visible and Near-Ultraviolet Radiation on Paper," by S.B. Lee, J. Bogaard, and R.L. Feller. In Historic Textile and Paper Materials II: Conservation and Characterization (ACS Symposium Series 410). American Chemical Society, 1989, p. 54-62.

This is not a new publication, but it concerns a matter of general interest--the effects of visible light, as well as UV radiation, on papers with little or no lignin content. Perhaps this paper is not as well known as it might be.

"Daylight" fluorescent lamps were used as the light source, and all three of the papers were aged at 90°C and 50% RH after light exposure. The graphs show a moderate decline in degree of polymerization (DP) and folding endurance, and a moderate rise in hot-alkali-soluble matter (a result of oxidation) after 800,000 to 1,300,000 footcandle hours of light exposure. However, the results of the subsequent thermal aging are amazing, especially for the Whatman filter paper: Thermal aging for 20 days caused a loss of DP about seven times as great as that caused by the prior light aging. The other papers also deteriorated rapidly from heat after they had been "set up" for it by the light exposure. (From the June Abbey Newsletter. 3B1.24)


"Darkening of Paper Following Exposure to Visible and Near-Ultraviolet Radiation," by S.B. Lee, J. Bogaard and R.L. Feller. Journal of the American Institute of Conservation 28 (1989), 1-18.

Although this paper was published in the same year, with the same authors and on the same topic as the ACS publication above, it is not the same text with a different title. It reports a different series of experiments that involve post-irradiation natural aging rather than oven aging, and explore darkening (or bleaching) rather than loss of strength as a result. Papers with a wide range of pH and lignin content were exposed either to black light or to visible light.

The filter paper in this study showed scarcely any post-irradiation darkening after 120 days of natural aging, whether it had previously been exposed to UV or to "daylight" fluorescent lamps, and no matter whether its pH was high, intermediate or low. The groundwood test sheets, however, darkened twice as much at a low pH (near 3.6) as they did at a pH of 10, and the unbleached pulp even grew a bit lighter at pH 10. The daylight fluorescent lamps darkened the groundwood and unbleached sheets much more than the black light fluorescent lamps did--not less, as one might expect.

One of the authors (Feller), commenting on this study, says "Perhaps the most significant result: Figure 8 shows post-irradiation darkening directly related to the amount of lignin present in our particular experiment in spite of all sorts of treatments with chlorite (to reduce lignin), NaOH (to remove low molecular weight cellulosic components) and sodium borohydride (to reduce alkali-sensitive aldehyde groups)." Darkening and lignin are directly related at all lignin levels. (From the June Abbey Newsletter. 3B1.24)


"The Sandwich Concept," by A. Byrd. Paper Europe v. 8 # 11, Feb. 1996, p. 16. (PBA Abstract 4569, 1996)

A new three-layer office communication paper from Neusiedler AG, Austria, can be made with one kind of paper on the outside and another on the inside. The outer layers will always be ECF or TCF, but the inside can be CTMP or recycled fiber. Neusiedler is the first company in the world to make this kind of paper. It calls for a special paper machine with a three-layer headbox. (3B3)


"Are Hydroxyl Radicals Responsible for Degradation of Carbohydrates During Ozone Bleaching of Chemical Pulp?" by Y. Ni, G.J. Kang and A.R.P. Van Heiningen. J. Pulp & Paper Science, v. 22 #2, Feb. 1996, p. J53-J57. Experimental work to explore this possibility led to the conclusion that "it is unlikely that the carbohydrate degradation occurring during pulp ozonation is caused mainly by in-situ-generated hydroxyl radicals." (3B3.8)


"TCF Wood Pulp Fails to Please in Canada." Eur. Chem. News, v. 65, #1706, 4-10 Mar. 1996, p. 21.

The government of British Columbia demanded a drastic reduction of organochlorine wastes from pulp mills by 1995, and total elimination by 2002, so the mills started producing totally chlorine free (TCF) paper; but they can't sell it. In 1995, Scott Paper sold 6% of its total products as TCF, but this went down to 1% in 1995. Howe Sound paper sold some in 1992, but none in 1995. (3B3.91)


"Recycling is Garbage," by John Tierney. New York Times Magazine, June 30, 1996, p. 24-29, 44, 48, 51, 53.

Tierney examines accepted principles and underlying beliefs of recycling, and rejects each one for economic or environmental reasons. For instance:

  1. There is no more room in landfills, so the only option is to recycle. Rebuttal: The landfill crisis of 1987 was a false alarm, caused by municipal laws against new dumps. After the price of landfill space went up near large cities, they started sending their garbage further away to huge new landfills that were vying for their business. Most of the material in garbage was shipped to the city from factories and farms elsewhere in the first place, so why not?
  2. We must achieve garbage independence. We are laying a burden on future generations with our waste. Rebuttal: An economist at Gonzaga University in Spokane has calculated that if Americans keep generating garbage at current rates for 1,000 years, and if all their garbage is put in a landfill 100 yards deep, by the year 3000 this national garbage heap will fill a square piece of land 35 miles on each side. This is only 5% of the area needed for the national array of solar panels proposed by environmentalists. Its use as a dump is only temporary, anyhow, because it will become grassy parkland in time.
  3. We're squandering irreplaceable natural resources. Rebuttal: Jerry Taylor, director of natural resource studies at the Cato Institute says that paper is an agricultural product, made from trees grown specifically for paper production. Acting to conserve trees by recycling paper is like acting to conserve cornstalks by cutting back on corn consumption. Fifty years ago, when tin and copper were said to be in danger of depletion, and conservationists urged mandatory recycling and rationing, no one foresaw the development of alternatives to tin cans and copper wires for food storage and transmission of telephone messages.
  4. Recycling saves money. Rebuttal: New York City spends $200 more per ton to recycle the materials it picks up than it would to bury it in a landfill. The prices the city gets for its recycled materials are back down to near zero this year.

His recommendation, in short (not his words): Forget recycling and incineration. Don't panic. The market and free enterprise can do a better job of it. (3B3.93)


Elaine Koretsky's presentation at the 1995 annual meeting of Friends of Dard Hunter was entitled "New Theories on the Origin of Papermaking." John Bordley of Sewanee, TN, summarizes it on p. 11 of the Feb. 1996 Bull & Branch, the group's newsletter.

Koretsky has found hand papermaking in every part of China, and is particularly interested in finding out how papermaking spread along the path from Xi'an to an area northwest of Tibet, and to Burma. A history of hand papermaking in China written in 1982 is being translated into English and is supposedly being published by the Foreign Languages Press in Beijing, but it is hard to say when it will appear, she says, because they haven't replied to her fax messages. (3B4)

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