Enhancement of TCF and ECF Bleaching Processes by Urea and Enzymatic Pretreatments: Optimization of a Laccase-Mediator Pretreatment

Luisa L. García-Fuentevilla, Raquel Martín-Sampedro, Jose M. Carbajo, Manuel J. Diaz, María E. Eugenio


A TCF bleaching sequence consisting of a urea pretreatment stage (U), laccase-mediator system stage (L), alkaline extraction stage (E), and hydrogen peroxide bleaching stage (P) was used to study the effect of five independent variables on the dependent variables pulp properties, hydrogen peroxide consumption, and residual enzyme activity. Results showed that the most influential variable was L stage pulp consistency, followed by mediator and laccase dosages. On the other hand, oxygen pressure did not have a significant effect. The optimal UL partial sequence significantly enhanced the EP bleaching sequence: 49.8% vs. 33.4% delignification, up to 65.6% ISO vs. 56.3% ISO bleached brightness, and 50.3% vs. 89.9% peroxide consumption in the P stage. The ULE partial sequence also improved an ECF bleaching sequence (ULED0E1D1): 0.6 vs. 1.0 final kappa number; 82.7% ISO vs. 76.0% ISO brightness; and 54.1 N∙m∙g-1 vs. 51.9 N∙m∙g-1 and 3.3 KPa∙m2∙g-1 vs. 2.7 KPa∙m2∙g-1, tensile and burst indexes, respectively, when compared to the control D0E1D1 sequence.


Pycnoporus sanguineus; Urea; Bleaching variables; Optimization; Eucalyptus globulus; Kraft pulp

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