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Innventia Develops Stronger Paper

Stockholm, Sweden 16 September 2010 -- Innventia, a research institute, has produced a new method for making uncoated magazine paper that will result in a stronger paper with lower production costs and reduced raw materials consumption.

"For a paper mill that produces 450,000 [metric tons] of the new paper per year, this technology means an annual savings of approximately 120 million Swedish kronor," said Daniel Söderberg, research manager and initiator at Innventia and the person behind the previous work.

The new technique, derived from the aircraft industry, deals with the separation of fiber layers before they are joined together to form the paper.

"This technique uses a thin layer of water to stabilize the fiber layers and consequently form an even flow while they are being joined together," Söderberg said. "This prevents the layers from blending with each other. This means that it is now possible to keep the layers separate as well as to control the precise properties that are wanted in a paper."

For a product such as the IKEA catalogue, approximatel 200 million copies of which are distributed each year, this means enormous savings.

"We’ve tailor-made a new kind of uncoated paper, which is the same type as that used in the IKEA catalogues," Söderberg explained. "By putting finer fibers in the surface and coarse fibers in the middle of the paper we’re able to save up to 10% in costs on fiber raw materials and energy."

As of June 2010, Innventia is leading BoostEff, an EU project with a total budget of EUR 11 million, to demonstrate the industrial and economical potential of the new Aq-vane method by collaborating with Stora Enso to develop the kind of paper that is used in catalogues and magazines.

"This project also signifies a completely new way of working," said Söderberg. "The starting point in the project is three existing industrial production units, one of which belongs to Stora Enso. Using these, the possibilities of the new technique, together with existing techniques, are being adapted to demonstrate the potential product and the production process involved. The results from the project are going to be used as a basis for three investment projects involving technical specifications and economical results.


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