Date of Award


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science


Paper Science and Engineering


Cationic polymers have often been termed as both retention and/or drainage aids. A distinction was made between these two terms. Essentially drainage aids should be viewed as dewatering aids and retention aids should be viewed as those polymers that give superior retention. These effects may be interrelated, therefore the dominant characteristic should be used to classify these polymers. There have been many claimed benefits associated with the use of these cationic polymers in stock furnishes. The author felt that claimed dewatering benefits were mostly a matter of conjecture and contradictions existed. Therefore a pilot. paper machine study was designed to primarily analyze any dewatering effects and to isolate these effects.

Four trials were run with two controls (an initial and final control) ran during each trial. Moisture samples were taken so that various sections of the paper machine could be isolated. The sections isolated were the wet end (headbox to couch roll), the press section, the first section of dryers and the final section of dryers. The results indicated that the cationic polymers tested (guar gum, polyacrylamide) did not significantly improve dewatering under the conditions tested. The physical properties of the sheet were unchanged, with the exception of a slight tensile strength increase.