Parameters influencing hydrophobization of paper by surface sizing
Journal article, 2018
Paper surface hydrophobization, also referred to as "surface sizing", is often necessary for printing and packaging purposes. Typically, hydrophobic polymeric nanoparticles, in combination with starch are applied on the paper surface at the dry-end of the paper machine. In the surface sizing process, the nature of the nanoparticles, starch type, starch concentration and ratio between starch and nanoparticles, paper quality, ionic strength, and application as well as drying temperature are parameters that influence the result. The aim of this work was to systematically evaluate these parameters in order to create knowledge to be used for optimization of the process. Laboratory scale surface sizing trials were performed and the results from the trials showed that cationic particles gave superior performance compared to anionic particles. Both the starch type and the concentration of the oxidized starch had an impact on the performance. The effect of the ionic strength was found to depend on the particle charge: for cationic particles, the addition of salt was detrimental while for the anionic particles it was beneficial. An increase of the application or the drying temperature was found to enhance the performance up to a temperature around the glass transition temperature of the polymer.