Throwback Thursday: Making Corrugated Boxes

This image from the 1980’s shows Forest Products Laboratory (FPL) employee Vance Setterholm standing at the reel end of the paper machine in FPL’s pilot plant. He’s inspecting a corrugated container made from press-dried paper.

FPL employee Vance Setterholm in the pilot plant, circa 1980

FPL employee Vance Setterholm in the pilot plant, circa 1980

Press-dry papermaking was developed at FPL as a method to produce strong paper from 100% hardwood pulp. The process simultaneously applies heat and pressure to a web of wood fibers, and can also be used with softwood pulps to improve paper strength and smoothness.

During this time, FPL had the capability to start with a log and end up with a finished corrugated container, giving researchers the ability to study all the processing effects on the end product.