Dynamic Wettability Properties of Single Wood Pulp Fibers and Their Relationship to Absorbency

Kevin T. Hodgson, John C. Berg


The Wilhelmy technique is used to measure dynamic wetting properties of single wood pulp fibers. Several different fiber types are examined, differing both in species and processing conditions. It is found that there are significant differences in water wettability of these fibers because of varying fiber surface chemistry. The compilation of a "dynamic wettability profile" for complex materials such as pulp fibers is advocated in order to characterize more fully the behavior of these materials in wetting situations. The bulk absorbency performance of three-dimensionally random pads of these fibers is found to be directly related to the initial advancing contact angles of single fibers. The measurement of single fiber wetting properties allows the separation of structural factors from surface chemical factors in considering the absorbency of a random network.


Wetting;contact angle;dynamic wettability;Wilhelmy technique;absorbency;pulp fibers;Washburn theory;self-sizing;fluff pulp;penetration absorption;wicking flow;imbibition

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