Use of Bacterial Cellulose in Degraded Paper Restoration: Effect on Visual Appearance of Printed Paper

Nuria Gómez, Sara M. Santos, José M. Carbajo, Juan C. Villar


One of the most common methods used to reinforce damaged paper is to apply a lining, using Japanese paper (JP). The reinforcing material must consolidate the paper without modifying its visual appearance. The unique properties of bacterial cellulose (BC) suggest that it could be efficiently used to reinforce degraded paper documents. The changes in the visual appearances of the printed commercial papers lined with BC and JP were examined in this study. Four commercial papers, coated and uncoated, were printed with cyan, magenta, yellow, and black offset inks. The printed samples were lined with BC and JP sheets. Print density, gloss, and CIELab coordinates were tested in the lined and unlined samples before and after aging. Lining with JP notably affected the print density and CIELab coordinates. The lining with BC resulted in lower decrements in color intensity. The gloss values of samples lined with BC differed widely amongst the papers, whereas in papers reinforced with JP these values never exceeded 6%. Subjecting the samples to an aging process did not markedly modify the results except for the BC-lined samples, in which color differences increased.


Bacterial cellulose; Japanese paper; Lining; Optical properties; Paper aging; Paper restoration; Printed paper

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