Main content area

A unique microstructure of the fiber networks deposited from foam–fiber suspensions

Al-Qararah, Ahmad M., Ekman, Axel, Hjelt, Tuomo, Ketoja, Jukka A., Kiiskinen, Harri, Koponen, Antti, Timonen, Jussi
Colloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects 2015 v.482 pp. 544-553
cellulosic fibers, fiber quality, foams, micro-computed tomography, micropores, microstructure
Fiber networks can be formed using aqueous foam as the suspending medium. The mean bubble size of the foam affects the resulting pore-size distribution of the fiber network. The foam–fiber interactions cause in particular an increase in the proportion of large micropores of the network, in comparison with the fiber networks that result from traditional water forming at a similar material density. Experiments were carried out for two different types of cellulose fiber, and characterization of the resulting pore structure was based on X-ray microtomography of the resulting fiber networks. The unique pore structure obtained with foam forming was reflected in various macroscopic properties of the networks, which provides an intriguing opportunity to control the material properties of fiber networks via the selection of their forming.