Surface Characteristics of Chemically Modified Newsprint Fibers Determined by Inverse Gas Chromatography


  • Laurent M. Matuana
  • John J. Balatinecz
  • Chul B. Park
  • Raymond T. Woodhams


Acid-base properties, cellulosic fiber, inverse gas chromatography


The surface characteristics of treated waste newsprint fibers were investigated using inverse gas chromatography (IGC). The surfaces of waste newsprint fibers were modified with γ-aminopropyltrie-thoxysilane, dichlorodiethylsilane (DCS), phthalic anhydride (PA), and maleated polypropylene. The effectiveness of these surface treatments was monitored by the IGC adsorption curves using n-alkanes and acid-base probes. The empirical acid (KA) and base (KD) characteristics (i.e., electron donor/ acceptor abilities) of untreated and treated newsprint fibers were determined using Schultz's method and were correlated with the surface chemical compositions determined from X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The results indicated that the surface of untreated newsprint fibers had an acidic characteristic due to the electron acceptor character of the hydroxyl protons. The newsprint fibers reacted with phthalic anhydride or malcated polypropylene also exhibited an acidic surface behavior attributed to pendent carboxylic groups. Dichlorodiethylsilane produced a strong acidic surface attributed to the highly electronegative nature of the chlorine atoms of dichlorodiethylsilane. However, when the fibers were reacted with γ-aminopropyltriethoxysilane, the basic characteristic (electron donor ability) of the fiber surface was increased, presumably by the presence of attached amino groups.


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