Making Wood Pulp with Steam - Steam Culture

Learn how steam is used to make wood pulp which is a precursor to paper.

Today, we look at how wood chips are broken down using a steam digester until they become pulp. We also learn the basic anatomy of a wood chip is comprised of 3 elements: water, cellulose fiber, and lignin.

The lignin and cellulose have to be separated, which is where the steam digester comes into play.

The wood chips are combined in the digester with a cooking liquid called white liquor and high pressure steam. As steam pressure builds the white liquor is absorbed into the wood chips. The white liquor acts like soap and separates the cellulose fiber from the lignin. You are then left with a wood pulp and a by-product called Black liquor.

So, what's Black Liquor? Tune in next week to find out, and Brent will tell you what it's used for.

Check out ID Forest Products for the awesome footage we used in this video.

Key terms:
Wood chip
Kraft Process
Kraft pulping process
Paper products
Cellulose fiber
Steam Culture
Wood pulp
Black liquor
White liquor

WARE is ALL Ways Steam

If you have any steamy questions that you want Brent to answer, email him at Be sure to join us next Friday for the latest on Steam Culture.

Remember the value of your boiler system, maintain it properly and save cost in the future.
502-968-2211 - Need a Boiler Rental? We offer nationwide boiler rental. Get a quote within an hour! - Purchase clever, steam industry themed t-shirts. All proceeds go to Kosair Charities.

YouTube Channel:
Twitter: @wareinc
Science & Technology
Standard YouTube License
Science & Technology

Authenticate Your Account

Please select an authentication method.

A verification code has been sent to . This code will be valid for minutes after .

A verification code has been sent to . This code will be valid for minutes after .