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Reactions of Lignin in Chlorine Dioxide Bleaching of Kraft Pulps

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The reactions between chlorine dioxide and the residual lignin in oxygen-bleached softwood kraft pulps have been studied. In a first series, isolated lignin samples have been subjected to chlorine dioxide oxidation at different pH values and subsequently analysed by oxidative degradation and elemental analysis. Different analytical techniques have also been employed to follow the gradual chemical changes in lignins isolated from kraft pulps after each of the bleaching stages in the OD(EOP)DD sequence. The results demonstrate that, in order to minimize chlorination of the lignin, the first chlorine dioxide stage should be carried out at a pH around or above three. At this pH level, a high degree of lignin oxidation is also achieved. A certain (mono)-chlorination of the lignin in the first D stage cannot be avoided, but this chlorine is to a large extent removed in the later bleaching stages. The efficient and non-selective oxidation of the various phenolic lignin end groups by chlorine dioxide is clearly illustrated by the analytical data. Moreover, 13C NMR reveals that reduced lignin structures formed during the kraft cook survive the oxidative bleaching stages to a large extent.

Affiliations: 1: Royal Institute of Technology, Division of Wood Chemistry, S-100 44, Stockholm, Sweden; 2: STFI, Box 5604, S-114 86, Stockholm, Sweden; 3: CENG, DRF/Laboratoire de Chimie, 85X, F-38041, Grenoble, France


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