Thermo-hydro treated (THT) birch veneers for producing plywood with improved properties

Juris Grinins 1 , Bruno Andersons 1 , Ilze Irbe 1 , Ingeborga Andersone 1 , Anete Meija-Feldmane 1 , Anna Janberga 1 , Gunars Pavlovics 1 ,  and Errj Sansonetti 1
  • 1 Latvian State Institute of Wood Chemistry, 27 Dzerbenes Str., LV-1006 Riga, Latvia
Juris Grinins, Bruno Andersons, Ilze Irbe, Ingeborga Andersone, Anete Meija-Feldmane, Anna Janberga, Gunars Pavlovics and Errj Sansonetti

Abstract

The effect of thermo-hydro treatment (THT) on the properties of birch (Betula spp.) wood veneers has been studied. THT was carried out in a multi-functional pilot scale wood modification device of wood treatment technology (WTT, Latvia) under elevated water vapor pressure conditions at four combinations of temperature and treatment time (°C/min): 150/10; 150/50; 160/10 and 160/50. After THT, the following veneer properties were examined: mass loss (ML), chemical composition, bending strength (BS), tensile strength (TS), equilibrium moisture content (EMC), resistance to decay by mould and blue stain fungi, and surface contact angle (CA). The chemical components were changed by THT. Increased THT temperature and time resulted in hydrophobization of veneers as indicated by decreasing EMC and increasing CA data. All THT were effective against wood discoloring fungi, although insufficient decay resistance was observed. The mechanical strength properties of THT veneers were also deteriorated.

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