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Pyrolysis in the Pulp and Paper Industry

Pulp and Paper

  1. B. Bruce Sitholé

Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

DOI: 10.1002/9780470027318.a2210

Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry

Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry

How to Cite

Sitholé, B. B. 2006. Pyrolysis in the Pulp and Paper Industry. Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry. .

Author Information

  1. Pulp and Paper Research Institute of Canada, Pointe Claire, Canada

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2006


Analytical pyrolysis is a powerful technique that is seldom used in the pulp and paper industry. This article illustrates the utility of the technique to study the chemistry of wood and pulps, mechanistic aspects of pulping, troubleshooting process upsets in pulp and papermaking, and evaluating the quality of finished products. The technique has advantages over other analytical techniques in that little sample preparation is required and enough data can be obtained from very small amounts such as dirt spots on paper. In many cases good data can be obtained by analyzing the pyrolysis products by gas chromatography (GC) with flame ionization detection (FID). Detection with mass spectrometry (MS) offers the advantage of absolute qualitative and quantitative determination of the chemistry of the analytes. In many instances the chromatography can be improved by on-line derivatization of the pyrolysis products with an alkylating agent.

This article takes the reader through a survey of the different types of analytical pyrolysis systems, through data analysis and processing, and examples of applications of analytical pyrolysis in the pulp and paper industry. Ample illustrations are used to highlight the usefulness of the technique.