PSE 322: "Wet-End & Polymer Chemistry"

Course Calendar, Fall 2019 (See Syllabus, next item below)
PSE 322 Sec. 001, and PSE 322L
Classes: MWF 11:45 to 12:35 in Biltmore/Paper Lab Wing 2221
Labs: Tues & Thurs sections: Each 1:55 to 3:45 core hours, lab open 1PM until 5:30; Room 2226

Instructor: Martin Hubbe, Professor
Phone: (919) 513-3022
E-mail: (best way to contact)
Office Hours: Mon and Fri 10:00 to 10:45 AM and by arrangement
Office: Biltmore 1206 (Robertson Pulp and Paper Labs, ground floor)
Calendar & syllabus:; also in Course-Pack
Course website (quizzes,
readings, grades): NCSU Wolfware Moodle system
Course-Pack (required): Available through the Moodle site

Week Day

Assignment Due
Note: The online quiz cut-off is usually 11 PM of day before the chapter reading assignment is due (except for first two, etc.).

  2-F, 8/23 Course-Pack (CP), Chapter 1: Papermaking process overview; First chapter online quiz due by Sunday evening or earlier.
2 3-M, 8/26 Read Appendix A carefully. The definitions will be on the first test and you will be asked about them; Second chapter online quiz due by Tuesday evening or earlier.
  4-W, 8/28 CP Ch. 2: Aqueous chemistry basics for papermakers.
  5-F, 8/30 Worksheet: Water hardness and the total acidity calculations. Third chapter online quiz due by TUESDAY evening or earlier; do it early so you don't forget after the holiday.
    LABOR DAY (holiday)

6-W, 9/4

CP Ch. 3: Principles of soluble polymers and their use. Homework due for Ch. 2. Online quiz 4 due on or before Thursday evening.
  7-F, 9/6 CP Ch. 4: First-pass retention, formation, and related concepts.

8-M, 9/9

Worksheet: Calculating first-pass retention (show work). HW: Ch. 3. Online quiz 5 due on or before Tuesday evening.
  9-W, 9/11 CP Ch. 5: Surfaces of fibers, fines, and fillers. HW: Ch. 4
  10-F, 9/13 Online quiz 6 due on or before Sunday evening
5 11-M, 9/16 CP Ch. 6: Introduction to colloids; what makes a suspension stable. HW: Ch. 5
  12-W, 9/18 No specific assignment
  13-F, 9/20 Worksheet: "How thick is the double layer?" HW: Ch. 6, Online quiz 7 due on or before Sunday evening
6 14-M, 9/23 CP Ch. 7: Paper process additives, their chemistry & properties
  15-W, 9/25 Worksheet: Identifying charged additives and polymeric additives. Online quiz 8 due on or before Thursday evening
  16-F, 9/27 CP Ch. 8: Strategies of chemical preparation, dilution, and use; HW: Ch. 7
7 17-M, 9/30 Online quiz 9 due on or before Tuesday evening
  18-W, 10/2 CP Ch. 9: Papermaking functional additives. Worksheet: Avoiding mixing of incompatible materials; HW: Ch. 8
  19-F, 10/4 Worksheet: Select functional additives for a grade of paper. HW: Ch. 9
8 20-M, 10/7 Mid-Term Test, Online quiz 10 due on or before Tuesday evening
  21-W, 10/9 CP Ch. 10: Sizing and surface sizing
  10/11 FALL BREAK


Online quiz 11 due on or before Tuesday evening

23-W 10/16

CP Ch. 11: Starch, and dry strength

24-F 10/18

HW: Ch. 10, Online quiz 12 due on or before Sunday evening
10 25-M, 10/21 CP Ch. 12: Wet-strength. HW: Ch. 10, Online quiz 13 due on or before Tuesday evening
  26-W, 10/23  
  27-F, 10/25 CP Ch. 13: Uses of dyes and fillers to control paper's appearance. Online quiz 14 due on or before Sunday evening
11 28-M, 10/28 CP Ch. 14: Retention aids and their use. HW: Ch. 12
  29-W, 10/30 HW: Ch. 13
  30-F, 11/1 Online quiz 15 due on or before Sunday evening
12 31-M, 11/4 CP Ch. 15: Drainage and formation uniformity, Worksheet: Factors that hurt or help retention aid performance; HW: Ch. 14
  32-W, 11/6 Online quiz 16 due on or before Thursday evening
  33-F, 11/8 CP Ch. 16: Substances that interfere with retention and drainage, HW Ch. 15
13 34-M, 11/11 Strategies to improve formation uniformity. Online quiz 17 due on or before Tuesday evening
  35-W, 11/13 CP Ch. 17: Applications of colloidal principles in deposit control, HW: Ch. 16, Online quiz 18 due on or before Thursday evening
  36-F, 11/15 CP Ch. 18: Foam and defoamers
14 37-M, 11/18 Supplementary instructions for case studies. HW: Ch. 17, Online quiz 19 due on or before Tuesday evening
  38-W, 11/20 CP Ch. 19: Applications of water chemistry in aqueous coatings, HW: Ch. 18, Online quiz 20 due on or before Thursday evening
  39-F, 11/22 CP Ch. 20: Applications of water chemistry in recycling; HW: Ch. 19; Case study written results. Worksheet: Recycling unit operations and their efficiencies.
15 40-M, 11/25 Recycling, HW: Ch. 20, Online quiz 21 due on or before Sunday evening after the holiday
16 41-M, 12/2 CP Ch. 21: Lab and on-line tests for slurries and suspensions, Online quiz 22 due on or before Tuesday evening
  42-W, 12/4

CP Ch. 22: Wastewater and environmental issues related to paper machine operations

  43-F, 12/6

CP Ch. 22: HW: Ch. 21, Wastewater and environmental issues related to paper machine operations

Final F, 12/13 Final: 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM (Note: You are welcome to come at EXACTLY 9:00 AM if you don't need more than three hours)


SYLLABUS: PSE 322/322L, "Wet-End & Polymer Chemistry"

A. Instructor:

Dr. Martin A. Hubbe
Biltmore Hall 1206
Telephone: (919) 513-3022
Classes held: Fall semester, MWF 11:45 - 12:35 AM
Two lab sections: Tuesday or Thursday 1:55-3:45 PM core hours
Office hours for student consultation: M and F 10:10 - 10:45 AM and by arrangement

B. Course prerequisites and restrictions:

Students are expected to have Junior standing or higher; exceptions can be made for qualified sophomores with the approval of the instructor.

Co requisites: PSE 212, CH 221

C. Student learning outcomes:

By the end of the course students will be able to
· Identify terminology related to the chemistry of paper manufacture.
· Explain the functions of different chemicals that are added during papermaking.
· Calculate first-pass retention and related quantities.
· Distinguish between zeta potential and charge demand.
· Apply concepts of chemical interactions with surfaces and with each other.

D. Textbooks

PSE 322 course-pack, prepared exclusively for students of PSE 322, is made available to all students by means of the MOODLE learning management systems. The course-pack includes 22 chapters, 374 pages, and 208 original figures. Students are encourged to make electronic copies and/or printouts of the PDF files.

E. Course Organization and Scope

Main topics (approximate number of hours in parentheses):

1. Overview of paper manufacturing process relative to chemical use (3)
2. Aqueous solution chemistry related to papermaking applications (2)
3. Principles of soluble polymers and their use in papermaking (3)
4. The nature of surfaces fibers and fillers suspended in water (3)
5. Colloidal principles and applications: stable and unstable suspensions (3)
6. Chemistry and preparation of wet-end additives (4)
7. Effects of wet-end chemical additives on paper properties (6)
8. Effects of additives on retention, drainage, and formation (4)
9. Chemical and surface-chemical factors in recycling and secondary fibers (2)
10. Aqueous coatings: formulation and applications (2)
11. Applications of wet-end chemistry in improving paper machine performance (2)
12. Case studies related to paper machine operations, coatings, and product performance (3)
13. Wet-end chemistry monitoring and control (3)

Lab topics (1 credit hour equivalents out of the 4 for the whole course; approx. 12 lab working sessions); The following are typical examples from an earlier year. Each student team in every year of the course gets to work on four completely unique projects. In other words, the four hypothesis questions assigned to a given team are distinct from those assigned to other teams, and they are not exact repeats from a previous year. This practice has been adopted to encourage students to think about their answers to the hypothesis questions, rather than expecting there to be a "correct" answer.

1. Charge analysis with a streaming current detector. This exercise involves statistical analysis, determination of absolute and relative amounts of charge demand associated with either solids surfaces or the colloidal phase, and the responses "unknown" samples to independent variables such as pH, time, or molecular mass of a titrant. Students will have opportunities to apply statistics, unit conversions, and lab practices related to generating reproducible results. The lab work will re-enforce colloidal principles introduced during lecture. Students also will get practice in the keeping of research notes, the preparation of a laboratory report, and working with a small team.
2. Drainage aid evaluation by means of semi-automatic streaming potential device. After completing this exercise students will better understand the relationships between electrokinetic potential, charge demand, and the practical consequences of changes in the values of these quantities in terms of drainage rates. They will also gain some experience working with a semi-automatic device, especially in terms of appreciating how such a device can affect your statistical analysis.
3. Sizing treatments. Experimental design can be important to success of this exercise. The exercise also provides practice in the skills of chemical addition to a fiber slurry (including calculations, dilution decisions, and mixing decisions), handsheet forming, drying on a heated cylinder, evaluation of the level of internal sizing. Students also need to explain their results in terms of principles discussed in the lecture part of the course.
4. Dye retention. Students will evaluate factors affecting the adsorption of dye onto fiber surfaces. Adsorbed amounts will be determined by two complementary methods, sensing either the unretained dye (light absorbance measurements on aqueous filtrate) or the retained dye (paper color measurements). Students will learn about polymeric additives having different charge characteristics that affect dye retention on different types of furnish. They will run experiments to test a hypothesis statement and use statistics to support their conclusions.
5. Retention aid evaluation. This exercise provides practice in laboratory skills, use of statistics, and application of concepts related to the molecular function of polymeric retention aids. Each time will examine an issue related to such factors as retention aid molecular mass, charge density, or the effects of hydrodynamic shear. Each project team will be responsible for writing up the results in a form similar to what a chemical supplier company might present to a paper company. An example of the report format will be provided.
F. Schedule of Reading Assignments
The following schedule is based on a typical MWF schedule of lecture/discussions (3 credit hours), plus one laboratory session per week (1 credit hour value). The schedule is slightly adjusted each year to conform to the academic calendar.

F. Reading Assignment Due Dates
Week Day Assignment
1 W Course-Pack (CP), section 1: Papermaking process overview
2 MWF CP Appendix A: Overview of business ethics CP Sec. 2: Aqueous chemistry basics for papermakersCP Sec. 3: Principles of soluble polymers and their use.
3 W CP Sec. 4: First-pass retention, formation, and related concepts
4 M CP Sec. 5: Surfaces of fibers, fines, and fillers
5 W CP Sec. 6: Introduction to colloids; what makes a suspension stable
6 W CP Sec. 7: Paper process additives, their chemistry & properties
7 MF CP Sec. 8: Strategies of chemical preparation, dilution, and useCP Sec. 9: Papermaking functional additives
8 W CP Sec. 10: Sizing and surface sizing
9 MF CP Sec. 11: Starch, and dry strengthCP Sec. 12: Wet-strength
10 MF CP Sec. 13: Uses of dyes and fillers to control paper's appearanceCP Sec. 14: Retention aids and their use
11 W CP Sec. 15: Drainage and formation uniformity
12 MF CP Sec. 16: Substances that interfere with retention and drainageCP Sec. 17: Applications of colloidal principles in deposit control
13 WF CP Sec. 18: Foam and defoamersSupplementary instructions for how to approach case studies
14 MF CP Sec. 19: Applications of water chemistry in aqueous coatingsCP Sec. 20: Applications of water chemistry in recycling
15 MF CP Sec. 21: Lab and on-line tests for slurries and suspensionsCP Sec. 22: Wastewater and the environment
16 No new reading assignment
(Reviewing for final exam)

G. Projected Schedule of Homework Due Dates, Quizzes, and Tests
In addition to in-class tests and assigned homework, students are required to complete 21 on-line quizzes by means of NC State's WebAssign® system. The online quizzes are composed of ten questions each, all multiple-choice. The order of the possible answers are randomized for each student. Students are allowed to use their notes during these quizzes, though it is expected that some students will prefer to use the on-line quizzes as an opportunity for self-assessment. The overall score becomes available to each student upon completion of his or her test. Answer keys with several lines of supplementary explanation will become available after the final deadline for taking each quiz. The detailed schedule is adjusted each year to conform to the academic calendar.

See calender at the top of this page

H. Grading System

Item Proportion of Grade
Online quizzes 10%
Homework 10%
In-class, case studies, etc. 10%
Laboratory 25%
Mid-term test 18%
Final exam 27%
Total possible 100%

Laboratory work, which accounts for 25% of the grade of students enrolled in PSE 322, can be further broken down as follows:
completion of lab notebook: 5%; analysis and graphing 5%; presentation coordination 5%; lab report 5%; and peer scoring 5%.

For peer scoring, each student distributes a pre-determined number of total points among the other members of their work group. For example, if the team members believe that everyone has made a good contribution of effort and value to the project they may decide to apportion the points equally. As another example, if there were four team members and one of the team members did not contribute much to the project, a student could distribute their points as follows: 6, 6, 3 (based on an average value of five).

All academic integrity rules are strictly enforced.

I. Instructor's Policies on Incomplete Grades and Late Assignments

On-line quizzes (Wolfware Moodle) must be completed by the deadline in order to receive credit. Students are responsible for locating alternative computers they can use in case their usual computer is unavailable. The deadline is strictly enforced by the computer system in order to make it possible for students to view an answer key within a few days of taking the quiz. Extra work (not on-line) may be assigned to those who have medical excuses, etc., that cause them to miss quiz deadlines.

Points with a maximum value of 10% of the assignment will be deducted from worksheet assignments and other written work that is late by one week or less. Points with a maximum value of 20% will be deducted from an assignment that is late by more than one week. These penalties may be waived in cases where there is an excused absence.

The test and final cannot be made up, except in the case of an excused absence.

J. Instructor's Policies on Absences and Scheduling Makeup Work

Attendance is expected at all scheduled classes, labs, and any sessions that are rescheduled due to weather emergencies or other situations causing closing of the facilities. Exceptions will be made in case of excused absences, such as illness, if documented by a note from the appropriate authority.

On-line quiz homework can be done ahead of time, but it cannot be made up after the deadline of each particular assignment (due to posting of results). It is the responsibility of students who wish to make up for any lost points to obtain permission to do extra work to replace the value of any missed on-line (WebAssign®) quizzes.

K. Academic Integrity Statement

All academic integrity rules of the Department and University are strictly enforced. Students are encouraged to work together, if desired, when completing homework assignments and project work. No collaboration is permitted when completing quizzes, tests, and on-line quiz homework.

Students are expected to participate actively in classroom discussions and case studies. There is no penalty for a wrong answer during class discussions. Students are expected to take initiative in making sure that they understand the material and ask questions when they do not. Questions about the material are welcome during class, during office hours, or at any time that the instructor is available in person or through e-mail.

L. NC State Policy on Working with Students with Disabilities

Reasonable accommodations will be made for students with verifiable disabilities. In order to take advantage of available accommodations, students must register with Disability Services for Students at 1900 Student Health Center, Campus Box 7509, telephone 515-7653, .

M. Statement on Laboratory Safety

All laboratory work falls under the regulation of SAFETY PLANS. You will be trained in these safety plans and must be certified prior to working in the laboratories involved. These regulations are in accordance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations (OSHA) and are to ensure your safety and safety of your co-workers. Flagrant or repeated failure to follow safety regulations may result in injury to yourself or others and will definitely result in expulsion for the laboratory and a failing grade.

1. Safety is a very serious concern in the laboratory. Safety glasses must be worn at all times in the laboratory. Please were sensible clothing and sturdy shoes (tennis shoes are okay, but please no sandals, flip-flops, or open toes), and refrain from exposing neckties, necklaces, long flowing robes, hair, or loose or baggy clothing to the hazards if rotating equipment.
2. Hazardous materials will be used occasionally during the course work. If you have any doubt as to the safe handling of such materials, consult an instructor, the laboratory safety plan, or an MSDS sheet.
3. Due to fire and explosion hazards, smoking is not allowed in the laboratory at any time.
4. Regular attendance and participation is expected. Laboratory hours will be somewhat flexible to accommodate the experimental program. However, each student is expected to attend the scheduled core time periods.

N. Statement on "Pass-Through" Charges

There are no charges.

O. Statement on Transportation

No field trips or other travel, outside of the classroom and lab, are included in PSE 322 or 322L.

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