Richard Kerekes

Professor Emeritus


Research Summary

Fibre Processing and Papermaking Technology


McGill University, 1970, Ph.D., Chemical Engineering

University of Toronto, 1965, M.A.Sc., Mechanical Engineering

University of Toronto, 1963, B.A.Sc., Mechanical Engineering

Research interests + projects

Dr. Kerekes’ research interests are fibre processing and papermaking technology.

In fibre processing, his main interest is pulp refining, a mechanical process employed to improve fibre quality for papermaking. Recent work has focused on understanding the forces in refiners which bring about desired changes in fibre properties, in particular for the case of thin bars. This research extends earlier studies of energy imparted to fibres during bar crossings, known as Kerekes’ “C Factor” theory.

Research in papermaking has focused on the hydrodynamics of blade formers. As part of this research, fibre suspensions have been characterized for papermaking by a Crowding Number. In recent work, critical values of this dimensionless number have been related to connectivity and rigidity thresholds predicted by effective-medium and percolation theories for fibrous networks.

Work on wet pressing has focused on extending the Decreasing Permeability Model to equilibrium conditions. This extended model has been used to estimate the limits of wet pressing attainable on commercial paper machines.

Scholarly and professional activities + affiliations

UBC Pulp and Paper Centre (Founding Director)

Pulp and Paper Technical Association of Canada

Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry

Canadian Academy of Engineering

International Academy of Wood Science

Chemical Institute of Canada

Selected publications + presentations

Kerekes, R.J., “Perspectives on High and Low Consistency Refining in Mechanical Pulping”, BioResources, 10(4), 8795-8811 (2015)

Kerekes, R.J., “ A Theoretical Analysis of Recirculation in Pulp Refiners”,  TAPPI Jr.,13(4), 29-32 (2014)

McDonald, J.D., McDonald, E.M., Kerekes, R.J., “The Impact of Press Felt Design on Paper Machine Press Dewatering”, J-FOR, 3(2), 52-57 (2013)

Kerekes, R.J., McDonald, E.M., McDonald, J.D., “Decreasing Permeability Model of Wet Pressing: Extension to Equilibrium Conditions”, J-FOR, 3(2), 46-51 (2013)

MacFarlane, A.L., Kadla, J.F., Kerekes, R.J., “High Performance Air Filters Produced from Freeze-Dried Fibrillated Wood Pulp: Fibre Network Compression Due to the Freeze Drying Process”, Ind. Eng .Chem. Res., 51, 10702-10711 (2012)

Heymer, J.O., Olson, J.A., Kerekes, R.J., “The Role of Multiple Loading Cycles on Pulp in Refiners”, Nordic Pulp Paper Res. Jr.,  26(3), 283-287 (2011)

Kerekes, R.J. “Force-based Characterization of Refining Intensity”, Nordic Pulp Paper Res. Jr, 26(1),, 14-20(2011)

Kerekes, R.J. “Energy and Forces in Refining”, Jr. Pulp Paper Sci,  36(1-2), 10-15(2010)

Celzard, A., Fierro, V., Kerekes, R., “Flocculation of Cellulose Fibres: New Comparisons of Crowding factor with Percolation and Effective Medium Theories”, Cellulose, 16:983-987(2009)

Mao, J., Kadla, J.F., Kerekes, R.J., ” Retaining Surface Fibrillation of Wet-Beaten Wood Pulp in the Dry State”, Tappi Jr., 25-30, July (2009)

Mao, J., Grgic, B., Finlay, W.H., Kadla, J. and Kerekes, R.J., “Wood Pulp based Filters for Removing Nano-Scale Particles Suspended in Air”. Nordic Pulp Paper Res. J. 23(4), 420-425 (2008)

Kerekes, R.J., Dalpke, B. and Jong, J.H., “The Hydrodynamics of Formation

Improvement by Blades in Twin-Wire Formers”, J. Pulp Paper Sci. 33(4):183-188 (2008)

Goosen, D.R., Olson, J.A. and Kerekes, R.J., “The Role of Heterogeneity in Compression Refining”. J. Pulp Paper Sci. 33(2):110-114 (2007)

Kerekes, R.J. “Rheology of Fibre Suspensions in Papermaking: An Overview of Recent Research”, Nordic Pulp and Paper Res. Jr., 25(5), 598-612 (2006)

Garner, A.G. and Kerekes, R.J., “Transformative Technologies for the Forest Products Sector”, Pulp Paper Can., 107:6, 17-19 (2006)

Kerekes, R.J. and Senger, J.J. “Characterizing Refining Action in Low-Consistency Refiners by Forces on Fibres”. J. Pulp Paper Sci. 32(1):1-8 (2006)

Dalpke, B. and Kerekes, R.J. “The Influence of Fibre Properties on the Apparent Yield Stress of Flocculated Pulp Suspensions”. J. Pulp Paper Sci. 31(1):39-43 (2005)

Kerekes, R.J. “Is There Untapped Potential in Pulp Refining?” Pulp Paper Can. 104(12): 21-23 (2003)

Martinez, D.M., Kiiskinen, H., Ahlman, A-K. and Kerekes, R.J. “On the Mobility of Flowing Papermaking Suspensions and its Relationship to Formation”. J. Pulp Paper Sci. 29(10): 341-347 (2003)