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The performance of glue laminated railway ties after 40 years of service in the main line track
1989 - IRG/WP 2325
Two series of horizontally glue laminated ties made of a softwood body and topped with a hardwood lamination were creosoted and installed in 1947 in a tangent and a curved main line track. The tests are now 40 years old and the excellent condition of the ties of these two series suggest that a service life of 50-60 years can be expected.
J P Hösli, E E Doyle, C P Bird, T Lee


Effectiveness of "Gang-Nail" plates in preventing splitting of Eucalyptus poles and Brazilian hardwood sleepers
1984 - IRG/WP 3262
This paper presents the results of some tests carried out with an anti-splitting device, placed on the end surfaces of Eucalyptus spp utility poles and Brazilian hardwood sleepers at the beginning of an air-drying period. The type of device used, a "Gang-Nail" plate, reduces significantly the splits at the end-surface of poles, but reduces only a little the splits occurring in sleepers.
A M F Oliveira, J A C Sodré, O B Neto


Japanese wood preserving industry
1990 - IRG/WP 3596
Although a great amount of wood is in use in Japan, a little attention has been paid to the significance and importance of wood preservation. The fact reflects that only less than 0.5% of the total wood consumption is treated with wood preservatives today in the country. Over the 20 years before 1970, the annual volume of preservative treated (pressure treatment) wood was relatively at a stable level of approximately 500,000 m³. After the prominent peak of 709,000 m³ in 1968, 500,000 to 600,000 m³ of wood had been annually treated until 1980. In the 1980's the pace of production of preservative-treated wood gradually declined, down to 400,000 m³ in 1988. As for commodities treated with wood preservatives, poles and sleepers have been remarkably decreasing, and wood foundation sills which newly appeared on the market in the late 1960's became a major item. It is expected that new treated commodities will be accepted among Japanese people to stimulate the activity of wood preserving industry in Japan.
K Tsunoda


Untersuchungen über die Imprägnierbarkeit verschiedener türkischer Holzarten mit wirtschaftlicher Bedeutung
1976 - IRG/WP 370
Holzarten mit einer geringen natürlichen Dauerhaftigkeit können nur dann wirtschaftlich verwendet werden, wenn ihre Gebrauchsdauer durch einen zusätzlichen chemischen Schutz verlängert wird. Holzschutzmaßnahmen können nur regelmäßig geplant werden, wenn die Tränkbarkeit der verwendeten Holzarten bekannt ist. Aufgabe dieser Versuche war es daher, festzustellen, wieweit die Holzarten hinreichend getränkt werden können. In Rahmen der zur Zeit in der Türkei laufenden Entwicklungsvorhaben entstand die Frage nach den tränk-technischen Eigenschaften türkischer Holzarten, um ihre Verwendungsmöglichkeiten besser beurteilen zu können.
R Ilhan


Production of treated wood in Brazil in 1982 and 1983
1985 - IRG/WP 3327
The data of Brazilian production of treated sleepers, poles, crossarms, fence posts and other commodities are given for the years of 1982 and 1983. This report updates information given to the Group in Document No: IRG/WP/3321 Wood Preservation in Brazil, STU information no 445
M S Cavalcante


Wood preservation and the environment: A Canadian perspective
1990 - IRG/WP 3577
The non-pressure (surface) and pressure treatment of wood impacts on the environment in four ways. These are: through the production of treated wood at sawmills and pressure treating facilities; during the storage of treated wood prior to use; when the pressure treated wood is placed in service; and finally, when the treated product reaches the end of its useful life and must be disposed. By reference to current and past Canadian wood preserving practices, the impact of concern by environmentalists on future directions for the wood preserving industry is reviewed. "Information gaps" are identified, which must be filled if the general public's perception of wood preservation as being beneficial to society is to be maintained. The need for internationally agreed criteria for the approval of new preservatives is also identified.
J N R Ruddick


A new approach to the maintenance of wooden railway sleepers. (Second report)
1988 - IRG/WP 3492
The microenvironment and micro-ecology of wooden railway sleepers was investigated to assess their condition to determine the necessary treatment, repair and replacement criteria. In this report the efficacy of the secondary preservative treatment with solid boron rods is discussed and the development of an in-situ, nondestructive test method based on the creation and assessment of structural dynamic vibrations is described.
W Beauford, P I Morris, A M Brown, D J Dickinson


A new approach to the maintenance problems of wooden railway sleepers
1986 - IRG/WP 3392
The microenvironment of wooden railway sleepers is being investigated to assess their condition to determine the necessary treatment, repair and replacement criteria. The research work involves the development of an integrity tester to determine the condition of sleepers, a remedial treatment of sleepers by selective application of boric acid and a synthetic repair system.
W Beauford, P I Morris.


Wood preservation in Kenya
2000 - IRG/WP 00-40191
Current research on wood preservation in Kenya is mainly on the development of biological control of wood-destroying termite species, using mycoinsecticides. The major research institutions include the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI), Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI), Moi University and the International Centre for Insect Physiology (ICIPE). Training institutions include Forestry Training College, Forest Products Training Institute and Moi University. A number of publications, mostly an biological control of termites, are available and they range from workshop and conference proceedings to theses and journal publications. Wood-destroying termite species include several genera in Macrotermitidae and one drywood termite genus. Wood preservation facilities are available in Kenya, mainly for assorted timber products, sleepers and utility poles. The major preservatives used are CCAs, PCP and Creosote oil. There are still no set standards, specifications and requirements for wood preservatives and little, if any information exists on the marketing aspects of wood preservatives. The yet to be established Industrial Chemicals Act and the recently introduced Environmental Management and Coordination Bill (1999) may be able to handle regulatory, environmental, health and safety aspects of wood preservation in Kenya.
G Ochiel


Wood preservation in Turkey
1982 - IRG/WP 3216
The report reviews the forestry potential of Turkey and also the historical background of wood preservation in the country. The wood preservation industry in Turkey is mainly concentrated on the treatment of poles and railway sleepers. There is no official body responsible for wood preservation activities, and therefore its promotion depends mainly on the voluntary research efforts carried out by the universities and the Forest Research Institute. Present standards are inadequate to meet contemporary standards of wood protection used in other countries. These should be completely revised and updated. Its forest products potential and geographical location combine to give Turkey a great advantage for exportation of its timber to the Middle East countries. But first of all Turkey has to solve its own problems of promoting a productive industry and efficient wood preservation.
R Ilhan, R Cockcroft


Some statistics on the Brazilian Wood Preservation Industry: 1980-81
1982 - IRG/WP 3214
Statistical data on the production of pressure treated wood and on the consumption of wood preservatives are given for the years of 1980 and 1981 in Brazil.
M S Cavalcante, F C Geraldo, A R De Freitas


Performance of CCA treated Eucalyptus round ties
1985 - IRG/WP 3342
After 5.5 years of field exposure in the south of Brazil round Eucalyptus ties treated with CCA type A Oxide (OSMOSE K-33-A) preservative with retentions from 12 to 14 kg/m³ (0.75 to 0.873 PCF) (active ingredient basis) are performing very well. No decay or insect attack was observed in the 100 ties in test in real conditions of use; 10% of ties show incipient checking (what is a natural trend of Eucalyptus ties) and 3% show weaking of the nails.
V J Carlos, F R Niederauer, J P P Wehr


Production of treated wood in Brazil in 1984
1986 - IRG/WP 3357
The data of the Brazilian production of sleepers, poles, crossarms, fence posts and other commodities are given for the year of 1984.
M S Cavalcante


Comparative life cycle assessment of Swiss railroad sleepers
1998 - IRG/WP 98-50117
The results of an environmental LCA carried out on railway sleepers made of prestressed concrete, sectional steel and creosote impregnated beech as used on main lines of Switzerland's railways are presented. All extractions from and insertions into the environment which were connected with the manufacture, use and disposal of the different types of sleeper were inventoried and assessed, in accordance with ISO 14040 guidelines. Included in the analysis were the sleepers themselves, the auxiliary materials and a part of the impacts caused by the construction work plus the maintenance of the track bed including the resulting transports. Creosote impregnated beech wood sleepers exhibit unfavourable ecological characteristics in practically all impact categories. When compared with concrete and steel sleepers, in particular the shorter servicelife but also emissions from creosote components during usage and the relatively complex rail mounting arrangement have a negative impact on their environmental profile. Several measures for an environmental improvement are discussed and investigated. It is especially important and realistic to reduce the emissions from creosote components during the servicelife of the wooden sleepers. This can be partly achieved by reducing the amount of creosote per sleeper unit. Considerably more effective is the use of creosote WEI type C instead of type B, which has a lower proportion of low boiling and therefore lower volatile components. Employing suitable optimisation measures in particular for lengthening the servicelife, would be an additional step to improve the environmental profile of the beech sleeper.
T Künniger, K Richter


Untersuchungen über die Imprägnierbarkeit bei verschiedenen türkischer Holzarten von wirtschaftlicher Bedeutung
1976 - IRG/WP 365
Holzarten mit einer geringen natürlichen Dauerhaftigkeit können nur dann wirtschaftlich verwendet werden, wenn ihre Gebrauchsdauer durch einen zusätzlichen chemischen Schutz verlängert wird. Holzschutzmaßnahmen können nur regelmäßig geplant werden, wenn die Tränkbarkeit der gebrauchten Holzarten bekannt ist. Aufgaben dieser Versuche war es daher, festzustellen, wieweit die Holzarten hinreichend getränkt werden können. Im Rahmen der zur Zeit in der Türkei laufenden Entwicklungsvorhaben entstand die Frage nach den tränk-technischen Eigenschaften türkischer Holzarten, um ihre Verwendungsmöglichkeiten besser beurteilen zu können.
R Ilhan


Commercial potential of the four-cycle method for the impregnation of green beech sleepers in Yugoslavia
1975 - IRG/WP 347
This paper was presented to the Conference on Wood Protection held in Sarajevo (Yugoslavia) in 1973. The paper was based partially on the report prepared by J. Struhar and G. F. Franciosi, who were appointed in 1972 as FAO consultants to demonstrate the new impregnation process for green beech sleepers in Yugoslavia. The so-called 4-cycle method was developed at the State Forest Research Institute in Bratislava (Czechoslovakia). The demonstration treatment was carried out at the Kolasin plant, where the double Rueping method is currently used. Comparing the double Rueping method with the 4-cycle method, the author discusses the possibility of introducing the new method into existing impregnation plants in Yugoslavia. Analysis has shown that the production costs of impregnated beech sleepers under the new method would cost 44 Dinars per m³ more for sleepers, or 530,000 Dinars annually (based on the Kolasin plant capacity). On the other hand, formation of tyloses and doat in "white" sleepers during seasoning, estimated to be 10%, would be completely avoided, saving 972,000 Dinars annually at the Kolasin plant. Besides the stock of untreated sleepers would be considerably reduced which would enable the saving of working capital at the Kolasin plant of about 2,5 mill of Dinars. It is also expected that due to higher creosote oil consumption and its even spreading through the wood, the service life of sleepers would be extended by 10 years (from 30 to 40). In such a way the Yugoslavian Railways would decrease the purchasing and installation costs by about 10 Dinars per m³ of sleepers or 1,270,000 Dinars annually (in 1972 USA$ 1 equalled 15 Dinars).
N Vidovic


Glulaminated poles - Progress report after 7 years' testing
1987 - IRG/WP 3444
In 1979 a number of glulaminated poles with various preservative treatments were placed in a greenhouse at Uppsala, at the Simlångsdalen test field in southern Sweden and under a power line just south of the Arctic circle in order to study their resistance against biological degradation. The tests have shown that the comparatively best performance will be obtained if each lamination is treated with a water-borne preservative (only CCA was used in this test) whereafter the laminated pole is treated with creosote.
J Jermer, Ö Bergman


Laboratory tests on artificial weathering of Quercus rubra crossties
1986 - IRG/WP 2252
Clear red oak (Quercus rubra) blocks were used to evaluate various types of accelerated aging tests including boil, steaming, and cyclic weathering. It was found that the repeated vacuum and pressure treatment of wood in water, steaming, oven-dry, and freezing appeared to be most effective in reducing the MOE in compression and hardness modules of wood specimens. Red oak crossties which were pressure treated with creosote - coal tar preservative were tested using the cyclic aging technique. This method will be used to establish correlation between short-term accelerated aging test results and long-term in service performance of wood crossties.
P Chow, A J Reinschmidt, E J Barenberg, S L Lewis


Will political initiatives stop the use of preservative-treated wood in Sweden?
1990 - IRG/WP 3578
The Swedish government has initiated several investigations on how to reduce the use of different chemicals. Among these chemicals are creosote, arsenic, chromium and organotin. A special investigation was carried out concerning wood preservatives resulting in different proposals on how to reduce the use of preservatives and preservative treated wood. The most important proposals were an "environmental levy" on preservatives or treated wood and banning wood treated with chromium or arsenic in constructions above ground.
J Jermer, M-L Edlund


Recycling CCA-treated poles with Charterm
2005 - IRG/WP 05-50224-17
After 10 years of Research and Development, the first “Chartherm” industrial unit is now operating since nearly half a year, thanks to Thermya SA, engineering company, current owner of all the “Chartherm” process Patents and Rights. In accord with the recycling contracts signed with several French major companies, the “Chartherm” plant, located near Bordeaux, recycles every day several hundred CCA treated wooden poles, mixed with some creosote, CCB and CFK treated ones, since the “Chartherm” process do not requires any pre-sorting, being able to process all kinds of treated wood, whichever be the type of contamination of the wood. The "Chartherm" process consists in a “distillation” of wood, at low temperature, in a neutral atmosphere. Each metric ton of wood waste getting into the system produces an average of 300 kg of clean Carbon powder, which has many applications in different industries. All these makes the “Chartherm” process be a very attractive treated wood recycling solution from an environmental, technical and economical point of view.
J-S Hery


A new approach to the maintenance of wooden railway sleepers. (Final Report)
1992 - IRG/WP 92-3724
The micro-environment of wooden railway sleepers was investigated to assess their condition, to determine the necessary treatment, repair and replacement criteria. In the final report the secondary preservative treatment of wooden sleepers with solid boron rods is discussed; the complete development of an in-situ, non-destructive test method based on structural dynamics analysis is described. The maintenance of wooden sleepers using these techniques and the resulting cost benefits within the railway industry are also discussed.
W Beauford, A M Brown, D J Dickinson


Further progress towards a cleaner creosote treatment - Summarised report
1984 - IRG/WP 3304
This document provides an up-dated progress report on our development of pigment emulsified creosote (PEC) used as a cleaner alternative to conventional high temperature creosote. A range of commodities (both hardwood and softwood) has now been satisfactorily treated in pilot plant and full scale commercial operations. Both brown (PEC 30B) and white (PEC 30W) formulations have been used. In addition a number of biocides have been added to PEC 30B in order that wood may be treated to lower overall creosote levels while still retaining full preservation performance. It is anticipated that PEC will be used to treat a wide range of hardwood and softwood commodities.
H Greaves, C-W Chin, J B Watkins


Investigations of the treatability of various commercially significant Turkish timbers
1976 - IRG/WP 370 E
Timbers which naturally deteriorate quickly can only be used commercially when their life is increased by the use of chemical treatments. The treatment of the timber can only be planned on a regular basis when the treatability of the wood is known. The purpose of the experiments was therefore to determine to what extent the various types of wood could be sufficiently impregnated. The question of the resistant to treatment of Turkish timbers arose in the context of the currently running program of development in Turkey, in order to be able to judge their usefulness more accurately. The experiments were carried out on small test pieces of sapwood and inner and outer heartwood; and on poles and sleepers of the following species of wood: Abies bornmülleriana Mattf. (Bornmueller fir); Picea orientalis L. Carr. (Oriental spruce); Pinus sylvestris L. (Scots pine); Pinus nigra var. pallasiana (Austrian pine); Fagus orientalis L. (Turkish beech); Quercus dschorochensis K. Koch (Dschorochensis oak). The species of wood mentioned were chosen as experimental material; coal tar creosote and an aqueous solution of Wolmanit-CB were chosen as preservatives, and the techniques used were the vacuum/pressure method and a newly developed method of replacing the sap under atmospheric pressure. The technique of impregnation was such that the results are relevant to a great extent to practical situations. The analysis of the extensive data was carried out by electronic computer. The analysis used the following statistical methods: Anaylsis of variance - Correlation - Simple linear regression with graphical representation of the regression line - Multiple linear regression. The experiments were an attempt to evaluate the treatability of the various species of wood by a statistical analysis of the amount of preservative taken up and its depth of penetration. In this work a series of correlations between the amount of preservative taken up and the depth of penetration, and their dependence on the properties (of the wood) are explained.
R Ilhan


Remedial treatment of creosoted railway sleepers of redwood by selective application of boric acid
1980 - IRG/WP 3134
An ideal preservative for remedial treatment must primarily be characterized by two requirements. First, it must have an ability to diffuse and distribut evenly into the wood and secondly, it must be fixed properly so that it does not leach out too fast. However, these two characteristics conflict with each other, and the choice of preservative must of necessity be a compromise. Wood preservatives based on boric acid have excellent diffusibility but like the fluorides they are not appreciably fixed in the wood. It was therefore considered important to study the progress of the boric acid diffusion in creosoted sleepers in full scale tests. Impregnation equipment and technique were of course also of interest in the study. The tests started in September 1970, when approximately 100 creosoted sleepers, after being in service for 13 years, were treated with a boric acid paste and installed in a test track at the marshalling yard at Nässjö (the Nässjö test). To obtain an indication of the effect of the treatment for a track in use and to study the developed method and equipment, in April 1974, approximately 1000 seventeen years old creosoted sleepers on the main line south of Kungsbacka (the Kungsbacka test) were treated. Samples of timber have been extracted from the sleepers on the two sites and analysed after different times of exposure in order to follow the progress of diffusion of the boric acid. In total, more than 2000 chemical analyses have been carried out by Borax Holdings Ltd in England. In order to establish whether the boric acid treatment adversely affected the electrical resistance of a sleeper, a small scale trial was carried out with 11 sleepers from the Nässjö test. In May 1971 they were installed in a test track near the SJ Civil Engineering Laboratory in Stockholm. As the study progressed, a large amount of data from the chemical analyses was obtained, and to evaluate the fungicidal effect of the boric acid in the sleepers a series of biological tests was carried out at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Uppsala. The Swedish Wood Preservation Institute has been responsible for the final revision and editing of the results as well as compiling this report.
C Bechgaard, L Borup, B Henningsson, J Jermer


Wood Preservation in the Federal Republic of Germany
1981 - IRG/WP 3157
The report gives some statistics about the forest products industries in the Federal Republic and a general review of the wood preservation industry. The trend in the use of wooden railway sleepers is decreasing, as is the use of poles. The sale of other pre-treated timber, mainly fence posts, palisades and domestic fences, is however slightly increasing. Apart from the use of pressure treatments for poles and sleepers, dipping, deluging and spraying are the most common methods of treatment used. For constructional timbers the treatment given is often only of a poor quality. A glossary of the treatments used is given and a list of the firms supplying approved preservatives. Information is given for applicants who wish to have preservatives approved for use in the Federal Republic. All wood preservatives have to be registered for the treatment of any constructional timber which relates to the strength of a building. New types of biocides will obtain approval only after special tests have been carried out to ensure their long term effectiveness. The approved State Laboratories which can issue test certificates and organizations which can give useful advice to users of treated wood are listed, together with the addresses of some other organizations. The report lists all the relevant German standards.
R Cockcroft, H Willeitner


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