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Influence of deformability of kraft pulp fiber surface estimated by force curve measurements on atomic force microscope (AFM) contact mode imaging


Attempts were made to obtain high-resolution images of an unbeaten bleached softwood kraft pulp fiber surface in water by applying contact mode atomic force microscopy. However, clear topographic images could not be obtained. In order to investigate the possibility of deformation of a pulp fiber surface during scanning, force curve measurements were applied to pulp fiber surfaces. It was found that a pulp fiber in water had a more deformable surface than an air-dried pulp fiber in air. Moreover, the spring constant of it was estimated to be close to that of a cantilever applied for imaging. Therefore, the images of a pulp fiber surface in water were thought to be significantly affected by deformation, which was considered to be an important cause of the unclear images.


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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Tomokazu Sasaki.

Additional information

Parts of this article was presented at the 53rd Annual Meeting of the Japan Wood Research Society, Fukuoka, Japan, March 2003, the 54th Annual Meeting of the Japan Wood Research Society, Hokkaido, Japan, August 2004, the 12th International Symposium on Wood and Pulping Chemistry, Madison, USA, June 2003, and the 13th International Symposium on Wood, Fiber and Pulping Chemistry, Oakland, New Zealand, May 2005

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Sasaki, T., Okamoto, T. & Meshitsuka, G. Influence of deformability of kraft pulp fiber surface estimated by force curve measurements on atomic force microscope (AFM) contact mode imaging. J Wood Sci 52, 377–382 (2006).

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Key words

  • Atomic force microscopy
  • Force curve measurement
  • Kraft pulp fiber
  • Pulp fiber in water