The Effect of Atmospheric Pressure Plasma on Paper and Pulps

Carrie Cornelius, Carl Saquing, Richard Venditti, Marian McCord, Mohamed Bourham


The increased functionality of cellulose fiber based paper products is of high interest, as researchers are investigating methods to replace petroleum-based products with modified paper products. In this study, fully bleached wood pulps were treated with atmospheric pressure plasma, made into paper handsheets, and then tested for surface and other physical properties. Paper handsheets after formation were also treated with plasma to induce surface modifications. The plasma was generated using helium with fractions of either O2, CF4, or C3F6 to determine the effect of the nature of the gas. Drying methods had a greater effect on strength properties and density than plasma treatment. Plasma treatments on previously made paper increased the surface roughness, but plasma treatments on pulps prior to papermaking did not cause any roughness changes in the resulting paper. X-ray photoemission spectroscopy (XPS) revealed small increases in the oxygen to carbon ratios of oxygen enhanced plasmas for both pulp and paper treated samples. The plasma treatment showed evidence of surface fluorine in paper treated with CF4 containing plasma, but not in pulps treated with CF4 containing plasma and then made into paper.


Paper; Pulp; Plasma; Surface Treatment

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Welcome to BioResources! This online, peer-reviewed journal is devoted to the science and engineering of biomaterials and chemicals from lignocellulosic sources for new end uses and new capabilities. The editors of BioResources would be very happy to assist you during the process of submitting or reviewing articles. Please note that logging in is required in order to submit or review articles. Martin A. Hubbe, (919) 513-3022,; Lucian A. Lucia, (919) 515-7707, URLs:; ISSN: 1930-2126