skip to main content

Title: Synthesis, Characterization, to application of water soluble and easily removable cationic pressure sensitive adhesives

In recent years, the world has expressed an increasing interest in the recycling of waste paper to supplement the use of virgin fiber as a way to protect the environment. Statistics show that major countries are increasing their use of recycled paper. For example, in 1991 to 1996, the U.S. increased its recovered paper utilization rate from 31% to 39%, Germany went from 50% to 60%, the UK went from 60% to 70%, France increased from 46% to 49%, and China went from 32% to 35% [1]. As recycled fiber levels and water system closures both increase, recycled product quality will need to improve in order for recycled products to compete with products made from virgin fiber [2]. The use of recycled fiber has introduced an increasing level of metal, plastic, and adhesive contamination into the papermaking process which has added to the complexity of the already overwhelming task of providing a uniform and clean recycle furnish. The most harmful of these contaminates is a mixture of adhesives and polymeric substances that are commonly known as stickies. Stickies, which enter the mill with the pulp furnish, are not easily removed from the repulper and become more difficult the further downmore » the system they get. This can be detrimental to the final product quality. Stickies are hydrophobic, tacky, polymeric materials that are introduced into the papermaking system from a mixture of recycled fiber sources. Properties of stickies are very similar to the fibers used in papermaking, viz. size, density, hydrophobicity, and electrokinetic charge. This reduces the probability of their removal by conventional separation processes, such as screening and cleaning, which are based on such properties. Also, their physical and chemical structure allows for them to extrude through screens, attach to fibers, process equipment, wires and felts. Stickies can break down and then reagglomerate and appear at seemingly any place in the mill. When subjected to a number of factors including changes in pH, temperature, concentration, charge, and shear forces, stickies can deposit [3]. These deposits can lead to decreased runnability, productivity and expensive downtime. If the stickie remains in the stock, then machine breaks can be common. Finally, if the stickie is not removed or deposited, it will either leave in the final product causing converting and printing problems or recirculate within the mill. It has been estimated that stickies cost the paper industry between $600 and $700 million a year due to the cost of control methods and lost production attributed to stickies [3]. Also, of the seven recycling mills opened in the United States between 1994 and 1997, four have closed citing stickies as the main reason responsible for the closure [4]. Adhesives are widely used throughout the paper and paperboard industry and are subsequently found in the recycled pulp furnish. Hodgson stated that even the best stock preparation process can only remove 99% of the contaminants, of which the remaining 1% is usually adhesives of various types which are usually 10-150 microns in effective diameter [5]. The large particles are removed by mechanical means such as cleaners and screens, and the smaller, colloidal particles can be removed with washing. The stickies that pass through the cleaning and screening processes cause 95% of the problems associated with recycling [6]. The cleaners will remove most of the stickies that have a density varying from the pulp slurry ({approx}1.0 g/cm3) and will accept stickies with densities ranging from 0.95-1.05 g/cm3 [2]. The hydrophobicity of the material is also an important characteristic of the stickie [7]. The hydrophobicity causes the stickies to agglomerate with other hydrophobic materials such as other stickies, lignin, and even pitch. The tacky and viscous nature of stickies contributes to many product and process problems, negatively affecting the practicality of recycled fiber use. The source of stickies that evade conventional removal techniques are usually synthetic polymers, including acrylates, styrene butadiene rubber, vinyl acetates, and polypropylene [5,6,8-12]. Sources of these adhesives are usually broken down into categories based on application.« less
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
TRN: US200430%%1054
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Resource Relation:
Other Information: PBD: 30 Jan 2004
Research Org:
Golden Field Office, Golden, CO (US)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EE) (US)
Country of Publication:
United States