DuraSoft Project: a multidisciplinary approach for softwood protection

IRG/WP 21-50367

I Guarneri, V Moschino, N Nesto, T Marceta, M Sigovini, E Borella di Torre, L Dametto, S Pasqual, M Humar, B Lesar, T Cibic, V Natali, E di Poi, F Cerino, D Formasaro, M Kralj, F Relitti, C Balestra, M Celussi, A Franzo, A Volpi Ghirardini, M Picone, G G Distefano, M Russo, D Marchetto, R Rakar, I Trobec, D Marinic, G Rep, N Thaler, T Galvan, R Lazzarini, F Gombac, D Tagliapietra

Over the course of millennia, fishing and agro-pastoral activities have produced unique housing types in the Italian lagoons and in the Slovenian highlands where the use of wood is predominant. They are associated with wooden service infrastructures such as piers, moorings, piling and fences. However, the existence of these structures and the associated cultural heritage are subject to constant maintenance no longer economically sustainable in humid and coastal environments where wood degradation is massive and fast. To overcome this problem, in the last century the use of particularly polluting wood protection products as well as of unsuitable materials have been perpetrated, causing environmental damage or unsustainable use of resources. The DuraSoft Project aims to test some new techniques and products, developed and produced by the partners, which intend to increase the durability of traditional wood species. The treated wood may be used for traditional constructions in socio-ecologically sensitive environments, making its use economically and environmentally sustainable within the Adriatic alpine-maritime area. The environmental compatibility of these techniques is evaluated through a broad spectrum of ecotoxicological tests. They will be applied at different levels of biological organisation, from the molecular and cellular responses measured in bioindicator organisms to the effects on epibionthic microbial communities. The wood species and the treatments applied are tested with different methods to evaluate both the wood materials and real objects degradation performances, applying also standard methods (EN 275, EN 252). Coniferous wood is historically used in the Alpine-maritime area of the Upper Adriatic, but is less durable than hardwood species. The objectives of the DuraSoft Project are particularly relevant due the high availability of softwood lumber following the recent disasters caused in the Alps by Climate Change.

Keywords: sustainability, wood protection, softwood, innovative techniques, ecotoxicology, environmental compatibility, cultural heritage

Conference: 21-11-1/2 IRG52 Webinar

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