NC State
D.S. Keller, H. Abedsoltan, J. Reid and L. Yin. Mesoscale water wetting of low-density fibrous structures: Experimentation and simulation. In Advances in Pulp and Paper Research, Cambridge 2022, Trans. of the XVIIth Fund. Res. Symp. Cambridge, 2022 (D. Coffin and W. Batchelor, eds), pp 511-564. FRC, Manchester, 2022.


This paper describes the investigation of the water absorption behavior of low density, fibrous kitchen towels at dimensions from 10-3 mm to 102 mm. The investigation involved both the experimental observation of radial wetting from a point source and the numerical simulation of the wetting using X-ray 3D microscopic data sets obtained from the same set of towel papers that were representative of conventional and premium products. The overarching aim was to examine the validity of the simulation, based on fundamental surface energetics of the condensed phases, in predicting the local flow patterns that are dependent on various structural features found in retail kitchen towel products. This study explored the relationships between local structural properties, including thickness, grammage, apparent density and out of plane deformation. Experimental results examined the local flow velocity in and around the various structural features of conventional and structured towels. Analysis of both experimental and simulated liquid regions included calculation of water absorbency capacity, aspect ratio, density analysis and through holes.

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