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Materials Testing - Pulp Testing

Paper Fiber Width GraphThe final quality of paper products is influenced by the properties of raw materials, fibers, and process conditions. In today’s market, fiber resources are continually changing, and new fiber types and combinations are being developed. The Process Development Center can support your efforts to maintain product quality and performance. Our wet labs and controlled environmental testing room provide many tests to characterize the properties of pulp and fibrous raw materials for papermaking. Our staff is available to serve your needs, with tests ranging from standard to customized.

Pulp & Fiber Analytical Equipment

  • Standard pulp evaluation apparatus
  • Gas chromatograph/Mass spectrometer
  • Liquid chromatograph/Mass spectrometer
  • UV spectrometer
  • Calorimeter


The University of Maine has broad range of equipment for evaluation of different kinds of raw material for pulp and paper production. In chips for pulp production, we can analyze for important properties such as:

  • Size and thickness distribution
  • Bark content
  • Basic density
  • Bulk density
  • Chemical composition

A pulp yield measurement method has been developed at the University of Maine. Samples are collected at the mill, then analyzed for cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin content and cellulose degree of polymerization. The total yield for the mill operation is then calculated. A validated data bank for estimating pulp yield using this technique can be used to estimate the yield of a variety of wood species and various pulps, provided the wood furnish composition is known.

Additional Capabilities

  • Evaluation of the effects of kraft pulping on pulp yield
  • Optimization of fiber strength
  • Evaluation of the effects of additives during pulping
  • Analysis of:
    • Extractives
    • Carbohydrates
    • Ash
    • Viscosity
    • Klason and soluble lignin
    • Kappa and permanganate number
  • Physical and optical property measurement
  • Fiber quality monitoring
  • Chemical analysis of wood and pulp
  • Lab refiner curve evaluation
  • Fiber identification – wood or non-wood

To find out more about the PDC’s analytical capabilities, please contact Pros Bennett at 207-949-4176. After scheduling your work, please visit our Shipping Information and Sample Submission pages and fill out our Sample Submission Form.

To find out more about our organization and how to work with us, please refer back to our Home page. To learn more about paper testing at the PDC, continue on to the Next Page.

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