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Steel Belt Press - Develope Cellulose for Stronger Materials

By applying high pressure and heat, the fibers in the pulp can be compressed and bonded together in a way that increases the paper's density and strength. The lignin in the mechanical pulp plays a crucial role in creating strong packaging as it acts as a natural binder between the fibers.

Steel bands and the associated steel band technology constitute an important component in specialized industrial processes where demands for abrasion resistance, heat resistance, surface finish, and lifespan are high. This technology has proven to be particularly useful in applications requiring higher tensile strength, compression strength, and especially wet strength, thus opening up possibilities to replace traditional plastics in various types of packaging solutions.

In many industrial processes, steel band presses are a central part of the manufacturing process. These presses are used to compress and shape materials to the desired form and density. A typical steel band press consists of a 40 cm wide machine equipped with a robust steel band with a thickness of 0.8 mm. This press is equipped with an infrared heating source, allowing the temperature to be quickly varied from room temperature up to approximately 250°C, enabling adjustment of pressure and temperature conditions according to specific requirements for different materials and applications.

The pressing process itself is carried out by a cylinder applying pressure to the material, usually paper in this case, and pressing it against the hot steel band in two press nip points. The band speed can be adjusted as needed, ranging from 0.3 to 3.0 meters per minute, to achieve the desired compression and shaping of the material.

The steel band press is an integral part of the production chain as it simulates conditions similar to industrial scale. It enables testing and development under more realistic conditions, thereby bridging the gap between laboratory experiments and real production environments. By using steel band technology in this way, it becomes possible to scale up and commercialize new material and packaging solutions effectively, which is of great importance for the future development in this field.

Facts

Testbed name

Steel Belt Press - Stronger Materials

Established

2017

Testbed category

Laboratory testbeds (LT)

Industry

Pulp, paper and packaging

Area

Bioeconomy, Biorefinery, Circular transition, Packaging, Climate neutral industry, Chemical processes and products, Pulp and paper, Material transition, Production and manufacturing, Wood technology

Region

Region Västernorrland

Tove Joelsson

Contact person

Tove Joelsson

Forskare

+46 10 722 32 23

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Lars Sundvall

Contact person

Lars Sundvall

Gruppchef Processteknik

+46 70 526 52 21

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