Evaluation of the physical properties of heat-treated native Peruvian woods for their application as coverings in buildings located in in arid, semi-warm and humid climates

IRG/WP 22-40943

K Ayala Castro, A Loayza Argüelles, V J Pilco Mamani

Wood is a material that has properties suitable for its use in construction: as a structural component, cladding or decorative element, however, it is necessary to have knowledge of its physical, mechanical and thermal properties in order to have a logical criterion when applying it. It is known that wood has hygroscopic properties, so it tends to absorb the relative humidity of the natural environment where it is used, in this process there is an exchange of humidity between the wood and the air, affecting in an important way the performance of the material. Heat treatment is a procedure that improves the physical properties of wood, decreasing its dimensional variation and absorption coefficient and increasing its resistance to attack by xylophagous fungi and its thermal insulation properties. The present research aims to evaluate the performance of two Peruvian timber species: Cedrelinga catenaeformis Ducke and Matisia Cordata, comparing the performance of both species against humidity to know if it is possible to apply them as building cladding in arid, semi-warm and humid climates of the southern Peruvian coast. The international standard ASTM D4442 (2016) and ISO 15148 (2002) were used as methodology to know the Moisture Content and Absorption Coefficient in both species, both untreated and thermally treated. The results showed that the performance of both woods against humidity was different, where the thermal treatment in Cedrelinga catenaeformis Ducke wood was significantly positive, reducing its absorption capacity and speed by 73 % when thermally treated at 180 °C, while for Matisia Cordata wood the results were not favorable, because its absorption capacity and speed increased by 9 % when thermally treated. It can be concluded from both tests that in real use in humid conditions or prolonged rain, typical of the arid, semi-warm and humid climates of the southern Peruvian coast, Cedrelinga catenaeformis Ducke wood would have a better performance than Matisia Cordata wood, either in its natural state or thermally treated at 180 °C.

Keywords: heat-treated wood, durability, cladding

Conference: 22-05-29/06-02 Bled, Slovenia

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