Natural Surfactants in Paper Recycling

EPA Grant Number: SU833151
Title: Natural Surfactants in Paper Recycling
Investigators: Rojas, Orlando J. , Austin, Chad , Hunter, Morris , Spence, Kelley , Tucker, Jarrod , Venditti, Richard
Current Investigators: Rojas, Orlando J. , Austin, Chad , Dasmohapatra, Sudipta , Hunter, Morris , Spence, Kelley , Tucker, Jarrod , Venditti, Richard
Institution: North Carolina State University
EPA Project Officer: Nolt-Helms, Cynthia
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 2006 through August 31, 2007
Project Amount: $10,000
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2006) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: P3 Challenge Area - Materials & Chemicals , Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , P3 Awards , Sustainability


The objective of this project is to introduce new types of surfactants based on renewable materials (sugar surfactants) for use in ink removal from recycled paper. By applying green chemistry approaches we not only will solve an important industry and environmental problem but also open an avenue for a number of products that are to be generated from the full utilization of forest and agricultural biomass. We will first select a number of sugar surfactants to be compared with toxic, conventional deinking formulations currently used in industry. The main methodologies will involve measurement of bulk properties and deinking ability. Foamability and foam stability will be studied since they are relevant to deinking flotation techniques. Our tests will be performed using bench-scale hydrapulper and flotation cells with temperature and shear rate control and also by using pilot-scale units. Deinking efficiency will be measured by image analysis and optical brightness. Fiber yield and loss will be determined gravimetrically. Changes in head and tail groups in the surfactant structure will allow us to fine tune the conditions for effective ink removal. Results from our project will facilitate better, safer operations and ensure a more widespread acceptance of deinking procedures which in turn will favor more employment, higher recycling rates, and obvious direct benefits to the environment. The replacement of petroleum-based surfactants with renewable ones implies the removal of toxic components in waste streams from the process, and will lead to an enhanced recycling process and subsequent reduction in landfilling. Overall, we aim at making a better use of our natural resources.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 2 publications for this project

Journal Articles:

Journal Articles have been submitted on this project: View all 1 journal articles for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

Water, watersheds, recycling, sustainable development, chemical exposure, health risk, toxic chemicals, bioavailability, organics, effluent, discharge, green chemistry, pollution prevention, alternatives, clean technologies, renewable, waste reduction, waste minimization, environmentally conscious manufacturing; environmental chemistry, engineering, analytical, surveys, nation, paper industry, recycling industry,, RFA, Scientific Discipline, INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION, TREATMENT/CONTROL, Sustainable Industry/Business, Environmental Chemistry, Sustainable Environment, Technology, Technology for Sustainable Environment, Chemicals Management, Environmental Engineering, renewable feedstocks, ink removal, clean technologies, alternative surfactants, biomass, recycling, surfactant recycle/reuse system, pollution prevention, green chemistry

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report