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Forming research

The basis of our understanding of forming comes from research into fibre suspensions and hydrodynamics in paper machine geometries. Examples of topics of interest include factors controlling fibre flocculation, the connection between the fibre and liquid behaviour in turbulent flows, mechanisms controlling fibre orientation, the influence of chemical additives on the behaviour of suspensions, and the transport of filler particles in fibre networks. This type of work is frequently conducted in cooperation with scientists at the Royal Institute of Technology.

Focus to improve the papermaking process

The focus of our efforts is always to improve the papermaking process. The FEX pilot plant is an invaluable tool in this context, since it allows us to investigate the dynamics of the forming process under industrial conditions. In particular, the closed white-water system ensures that the impact of furnish composition and chemistry can be rigorously investigated. Consequently, many of the forming-related activities are centred around this facility.

Current research topics include the connection between drainage pressure and the distribution of fibres, fines and filler material in the web, and ways to reduce structural variability in the sheet. The goal is to improve product properties through better control of the web structure, and to increase the often tight operational windows in today's production machines.

State of the art measurement methods

In our forming research, we employ state of the art measurement methods such as particle image velocimetry and high-speed imaging. Several of the methods have been developed in-house, such as the SOFA system for online analysis of web structure, the sheet structure characterisation methods found in the S3Lab, and a system to measure the drainage pressure between the fabrics during twin-wire forming. Modelling and numerical simulations are also used to gain additional insights into the forming process.


Paul Krochak
+46 768767372
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Product sheet




Fibre orientation measurements near a headbox wall
Carlsson, A., Söderberg, D. and Lundell, F. (2010)
Nord. Pulp Pap. Res. J. 25(2):204-212.

Fibre Orientation Control Related to Papermaking
Carlsson, A. et al. (2007)
J. Fluids Eng., 129(4), pp. 457-465.

The new STFI-former
Norman, B., Hermansson, L., Söderberg, D. (2007)
PulPaper Conference, pp. 17-21, FAPET, Helsinki.

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