Pipe rheology of microfibrillated cellulose suspensions

Tuomas Turpeinen, Ari Jäsberg, Sanna Haavisto, Johanna Liukkonen, Juha Salmela, Antti I. Koponen (Corresponding Author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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The shear rheology of two mechanically manufactured microfibrillated cellulose (MFC) suspensions was studied in a consistency range of 0.2–2.0% with a pipe rheometer combined with ultrasound velocity profiling. The MFC suspensions behaved at all consistencies as shear thinning power law fluids. Despite their significantly different particle size, the viscous behavior of the suspensions was quantitatively similar. For both suspensions, the dependence of yield stress and the consistency index on consistency was a power law with an exponent of 2.4, similar to some pulp suspensions. The dependence of flow index on consistency was also a power law, with an exponent of − 0.36. The slip flow was very strong for both MFCs and contributed up to 95% to the flow rate. When wall shear stress exceeded two times the yield stress, slip flow caused drag reduction with consistencies higher than 0.8%. When inspecting the slip velocities of both suspensions as a function of wall shear stress scaled with the yield stress, a good data collapse was obtained. The observed similarities in the shear rheology of both the MFC suspensions and the similar behavior of some pulp fiber suspensions suggests that the shear rheology of MFC suspensions might be more universal than has previously been realized.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-156
Issue number1
Early online date19 Oct 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


Open access funding provided by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No. 713475. The work was a part of the Academy of Finland’s Flagship Programme under Project No. 318891 (Competence Center for Materials Bioeconomy, FinnCERES).


  • Microfibrillated cellulose
  • Rheology
  • Shear thinning
  • Slip flow
  • Ultrasound velocity profiling
  • Velocity profile
  • Viscosity
  • Yield stress


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