Pulp and Papermaking Properties of Gypsy Moth-Killed Trees


  • Kevin R. Kessler
  • Peter Labosky Jr.


Pulp, papermaking, red oak, white oak, red maple, gypsy moth-killed trees


A study was undertaken to evaluate the pulp and papermaking properties of gypsy moth-killed trees. Red oak (Quercus rubra), white oak (Quercus alba), and red maple (Acer rubrum) trees dead 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 years were harvested, chipped, kraft pulped, and compared to pulped live control trees. No statistical differences (P < 0.05) in total kraft pulp yields were measured with time after tree death for the species evaluated. Handsheet strength evaluations were conducted using these pulps and they were compared at four CSf levels. With but a few exceptions, no statistical differences (P < 0.05) in handsheet tear and tensile properties were measured; however, wide variations in MIT fold and burst properties were observed. The differences observed in sheet properties over the freeness levels tested could not be related to wood degradation that may have occurred with time after tree death.

Evaluation of the top, middle, and bottom sections of pulped red and white oak trees dead five years was conducted and no statistical differences in total pulp yields were measured. Significant differences in pulp yields due to advanced wood decay were measured in red maple; however in most cases no differences in handsheet strength properties were measured for all species within the freeness range tested.

On the basis of the results observed in this study, it was concluded that neither the total pulp yields nor the papermaking properties would be drastically affected by the introduction of gypsy moth-killed trees into the kraft pulping process.


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Research Contributions