INFLUENCE OF ECO-DIVERSITY ON THE PHYSICO-MORPHOLOGICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF SELECTED PANDANUS SPECIES FOR PAPER PULP QUALITY IN PARTS OF RIVERS STATE, NIGERIA

N. L. Edwin-Wosu, F. B. G. Tanee

Abstract


The decline in wood raw materials for pulp and paper industries coupled with the increasing
demand for paper has renewed the interest in non-wood fiber sources. This research was aimed at
evaluating the fibre and pulp yield potential of some selected non-wood alternatives as potential
sources of raw materials for paper industries. The classical Braun-Blanquet releve method for
ecological sampling, Kraft process, the Technical Association of Pulp and Paper Industry
(TAPPI) standard methods and SAS statistical software were used for analyses and
characterization of some selected Pandanus spp. under varying ecological habitation. Results
revealed improved morphological characterization of fibers in relation to international standard.
The fibre length (mm); fibre diameter (μm); lumen diameter (μm) and wall thickness (μm) of salt
water P. leram were 4.20, 26.50, 29.00 and 2.50, while fresh water P. leram were 4.20,26.00,
5.26 and 2.31, respectively. The pulping characteristics of terrestrial Pandanus species were
1.90, 26.30, 19.20 and 3.10 for P. furcatus and 2.10, 21.00, 31.90, 2.54 for P. candelabrum with
relatively lower slenderness ratio and higher flexibility coefficient. All selected species had
Runkel’s ratio less than 1 which is suitable for papermaking. Though all the species had
promising potential for use in the paper making industries, the aquatic species has comparative
advantage due to its higher quality pulp, and higher mechanical strength which makes it more
suitable for paper production.
Keywords: Eco-diversity, Pandarus species, Fibre quality, Paper pulp.


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