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Observation of Quinonoid Groups During the Light-Induced Yellowing of Softwood Mechanical Pulp

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Unbleached and alkaline hydrogen peroxide bleached black spruce (picea mariana) stone groundwood samples were irradiated with a weak light source over a period of six days in an effort to probe the early photochemical events occurring during the light-induced brightness reversion. Samples withdrawn at daily intervals were subjected to oxyphosphorylation with trimethyl phosphite to label ortho-quinones and other chromophoric species with phosphorus. The solid-state 31p NMR spectra of these samples revealed the rapid formation of ortho-quinones during the early phase of irradiation, followed by a dramatic reduction of these species at latter phases. The data suggests that during the early photochemistry, ortho-quinones are produced in high yield pulps, which subsequently react creating other more complex chromophores which do not possess the quinonic character.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Chemistry and Pulp and Paper Research Centre, McGill University, 3420 University St., Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3A 2A7, Pulp and Paper Research Institute of Canada, 570 Blvd St Jean, Pointe Claire, Quebec Canada, H9R 3J9; 2: Pulp and Paper Research Institute of Canada, 570 Blvd St Jean, Pointe Claire, Quebec Canada, H9R 3J9


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