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Applications in Forest Products Industries

While the major substrate in the forest products are is cellulose, there is a substantial use of polymers, adhesives, and inorganic materials in products. Thus, there is a wide range of applications of our microscopic infrared techniques in the analysis of undesirable contaminants that seem to enter any manufacturing process.

The primary research application would be in the investigation of cell wall and intercellular compositions of microtomed samples prepared for the investigation of the effects of environment or chemicals on the microscopic composition of the plant. Other potential areas would be in the chemical characterization of plant diseases. The analytical spot size can be as small as 10 microns, but with appropriate sample preparation and microtomy, we can serially section materials with 1 micron intervals.
Identification of the sources of barely-visible contaminants in process streams or finished products can be done. Specks, spots, off-color areas, and foreign fibers are obvious targets for our microscopic infrared analysis. In addition, we offer diffuse reflectance FTIR spectroscopy for the bulk characterization of pulverized materials and specular reflectance and ATR spectroscopy for the surface analysis of sheet products.
As in the paper itself, we can nalyze particle, gels, and other inclusions in coatings as well as the compositions of unknown coatings. Streaks and runs in coated materials frequently have the causative particle entrained at the head. Isolation and identification of these particles by us can indicate the source and help to reduce the defect rate in the product. The cross-sectional analysis of multi-layer coatings can be carried out using either microscopic or reflection techniques.
We can offer competitive ink vehicle and pigment analysis on microscopic samples, identification of particulate contaminants in process materials and substrates, and analysis of localized adhesion defects and fisheyes.
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