The fiber surfaces, consisting of cellulose, hemicelluloses and lignin in varying compositions, form stable bonds thus creating a composite material with remarkable strength per square meter.
The salient feature of papermaking is that the fibers bond to each other without any glue or adhesive material added to the suspension.
It improves the bond strength by increasing the available contact area for the inter-molecular bonding forces. have adapted Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) microscopy to study the degree of bonding between cellulosic fiber-fiber surfaces, which they attributed to interdiffusion of the surface molecules.
Theoretically, the degree of interdiffusion is limited only by the polymer chain length, which is high for cellulosic fibers.
This study characterizes bond formation between pulp fibers leading to insight that could be potentially used to optimize the papermaking process, while reducing energy and wood consumption.
Paper is a composite material that has been used for a long time.
This result is counter-intuitive; however, for soft surfaces this is not uncommon.
The formation of the gel layer enables mutual migration of cellulosic polymers into the opposing surface.
This creates contact due to plastic, viscoelastic, and elastic deformation of the fiber surfaces.
The degree of molecular contact between the fiber surfaces initially depends on the surface roughness - smooth surfaces permit a high degree of contact.