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A New Decay Hazard Map for North America Using the Scheffer Index
2008 - IRG/WP 08-10672
Wood decay experts in the USA and Canada use the Scheffer Index for above-ground wood decay potential to decide among design and treatment options to ensure the durability of wood construction. This paper provides an updated North American decay hazard map and includes data on Central America. Index values calculated from recent climate data are higher than published values due to directional or cyclical climate change. Compared to previously published maps there is considerable expansion of the moderate decay hazard zone in the interior wet belt of British Columbia, across the northern edge of the Prairies and around the Gulf of St. Lawrence. This suggests a greater need for preservative treatment in these parts of Canada.
P I Morris, J Wang


Decay Hazard Classifications in China for Exterior Above-Ground Wood
2007 - IRG/WP 07-20357
A decay hazard map for exterior above-ground wood structures is presented based on Scheffer’s Climate Index, with the major purpose of promoting awareness for proper protection of wood structures in different locations in China. A very large area in the South, including southern Yunnan, most of Sichuan Province and Chongqing, and part of Hunan, Hubei, Anhui, Jiangxi, and Zhejiang, as well as all the more southern areas, has decay hazard ratings above 70, considered a severe decay hazard zone according to the accepted classifications. The moderate decay hazard zone, Index values between 35 and 70, consists mainly of the central areas of China, from the west to the east, including parts of Xizang, Yunnan, Qinghai, Gansu, Shaanxi, Shanxi, Henan, Hubei, Anhui and Jiangsu, as well as Shanghai. It also includes most areas in Northeast China, together with a small pocket around Beijing. By comparison, large areas in the north, from the west to the east, including most areas in Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, part of Qinghai, Gansu, Ninxia, Shaanxi, Shanxi, and Hebei, and a small part of Henan, are in a low hazard zone with index ratings below 35. The research demonstrates that the areas across China in the Southwest, South, Central China, Southeast, and Northeast, with the highest population densities and also containing areas on the east coast with the strongest economic development, have severe to moderate decay hazard for above-ground wood structures, making proper wood protection more critical and economically important.
J Wang, X Wu, M Jiang, P I Morris


Development of decay hazard maps based on decay prediction models
2016 - IRG/WP 16-20588
Durability plays a very central role in timber engineering, especially when working with wood in use class 3 and above where the risk of decay is high. As one of the primary decay influencing factors, the external condition, i.e. the local climate, is often graded by some type of climate index value. Predominately, climate indices are based on a direct relationship between weather data and decay. The aim of this paper was to develop a new type of climate index, including decay hazard maps, which explicitly considers the material climate. Firstly, the moisture content over time of a horizontal reference specimen was calculated using three different exposure models with weather data (rain, temperature, relative humidity) as input. Secondly, the output from the exposure models was post-processed using two different decay prediction models. Four different exposure model/decay-prediction model combinations were tested in total and repeated for many different locations in Northern Europe. Finally, the relative decay hazard between the different locations was calculated and interpolated, resulting in four preliminary contour plots visualizing the decay hazard in Northern Europe. The maps should be considered preliminary as they have not yet been verified against real decay data. The primary difference between the maps is the range of the relative decay hazard, i.e. the difference between the mildest and the most adverse conditions. The two extremes range between 0.6-2.6 and 0.8-1.8 respectively, which can be compared to the Scheffer index which ranges between 0.8-2.0. The next step, however not included in this article, is to compare the maps against real data.
J Niklewski, E Frühwald Hansson, C Brischke, D Kavurmaci


Confocal laser scanning microscopy of a novel decay in preservative treated radiata pine in wet acidic soils
1997 - IRG/WP 97-10215
Light microscopy of radiata pine (Pinus radiata D. Don) field test stakes (20x20x500mm3) exposed in wet acidic (pH 3-4) soil for 12 - 24 months showed predominance of an unusual type of decay characte-rised by tunnelling attack of wood cell walls. After two years decay was moderate to severe in wood treated to ground contact CCA specifications and also equivalent retentions of creosote, and a number of new generation preservatives. Relative to other New Zealand temperate test sites and also an Australian tropical site, the New Zealand acidic soil test site was very aggressive. Correlative scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) were used to elucidate the micromorphology of this attack. Tunnels of diameter 0.2-5 µm were present throughout all layers of the cell wall, and their orientation was not related to cellulose microfibril orientation. They also showed no preference for particular cell wall layers, indicating a lignin degrading capability. CLSM images showed that living, connecting fungal hyphae were present in the cell lumina and tunnels. This type of attack was predominant in wood that was highly saturated with water whereas wood that was less moist was predominantly attacked by classical white rot. Ongoing isolation and incubation studies in conjunction with further microscopy should enable identification of the fungal species involved.
R N Wakeling, Ying Xiao, A P Singh


Effect of acetylation on decay resistance of wood against brown-rot, white-rot and soft-rot fungi
1989 - IRG/WP 3540
Effect of acetylation on decay resistance of wood was investigated using wood blocks of Cryptomeria japonica, Pinus densiflora, Albizia falcata and Fagus crenata. Blocks were treated with uncatalyzed acetic anhydride for different lengths of time and exposed to Tyromyces palustris, Serpula lacrymans, Coriolus versicolor and unsterilized soil. The action of OH-radical on acetylated wood was also examined using Fenton's reagent. The enhancement of decay resistance by acetylation was revealed clearly for all cases of exposures but varying with fungal and wood species used. For a brown-rot fungus Tyromyces palustris, the weight loss reached almost nil in all woods at 20 WPG (weight percent gain) of acetylation, after the striking decrease from 10 to 15 WPG. For a white-rot fungus Coriolus versicolor, it was counted until 12-15 WPG in the perishable hardwoods used, but not in a softwood Cryptomeria japonica, even at 6 WPG. In cases of another brown-rotter Serpula lacrymans and soil burial, effect of acetylation was intermediate between Tyromyces palustris and Coriolus versicolor. Anti-degradation mechanism by acetylation was discussed, from these weight loss - weight gain relationships, and the IR-and 13C-NMR spectral analyses of fungus-exposed wood.
M Takahashi, Y Imamura, M Tanahashi


Field trial with poles of Scots pine treated with six different creosotes
1996 - IRG/WP 96-30115
In the middle of the 50's field trials with creosote-treated poles were started in France, Germany and Sweden. The trials were initiated by WEI (Western-European Institute for Wood Preservation). Six different creosotes were used and 40 poles per creosote were installed at each test field. Results after 39 years of exposure in Simlangsdalen, Sweden are reported. Poles treated with a heavy creosote were less decayed than poles treated with medium-heavy creosotes. Poles treated with a light creosote were most decayed.
Ö Bergman


Questionnaire - Fungal decay types
1985 - IRG/WP 1265
T Nilsson


JWPA method for testing effectiveness of surface coatings with preservatives against decay fungi
1981 - IRG/WP 2164
In 1979 JWPA established a new method for testing effectiveness of surface coatings in accordance with practical use of preservative-treated lumber. Comparing the new testing method with JIS A 9302, a few new trials - size of wood specimen, weathering procedure, and decay-test procedure - are incorporated.
K Tsunoda


Utilization of curcumin for detection of presence of boron in wood
1982 - IRG/WP 3191
It has been shown that curcumin is not a reliable reagent for detecting boron in wood that has been attacked by fungi
M-L Edlund


Co-operative studies on determining toxic values against wood-destroying Basidiomycetes: Progress report to May 1989
1989 - IRG/WP 2339
This document reports progress on the co-operative study between nine laboratories set up following the proposals contained in Document IRG/WP/2316. Results have been received from two laboratories. Toxic values data have been established successfully using the test fungus Coniophora puteana but problems have been encountered with the other test fungi.
A F Bravery, J K Carey


Monographic cards for wood-destroying fungi. [Fiches monographiques pour les champignons lignivores]
1970 - IRG/WP I 5B
C Jacquiot


On Donkioporia expansa (Desm.) Kotl. & Pouzar
1986 - IRG/WP 1285
Donkioporia expansa is found more often in houses than realised until now. Virulence tests according to EN 113 show not only an attack of oak, but also of other hardwoods and even soft-woods.
G Buchwald


Nondestructive Evaluation of Oriented Strand Board Exposed to Decay Fungi
2002 - IRG/WP 02-20243
Stress wave nondestructive evaluation (NDE) technologies are being used in our laboratory to evaluate the performance properties of engineered wood. These techniques have proven useful in the inspection of timber structures to locate internal voids and decayed or deteriorated areas in large timbers. But no information exists concerning NDE and important properties of wood composites exposed to decay fungi. For our pilot study on several types of wood composites, we examined the relationship between nondestructive stress wave transmission, decay rate and the bending properties of OSB exposed to the brown-rot fungus, Gloeophyllum trabeum (MAD-617). The following measurements were taken: stress wave transmission time (pulse echo test method), static bending test (ASTM D3043-95), and decay (expressed as percent weight). Stress wave measurements correlated with strength loss and with increasing rate of fungal decay. Stress wave NDE has great potential as a method for inspection of wood composite load-bearing (in-service) structures, detection of decay in laboratory tests, assessment of chemical additives to improve wood composite durability, and prediction of long term composite performance.
B Illman, V W Yang, R J Ross, W J Nelson


Moisture content levels and decay of hemlock
1986 - IRG/WP 1287
As a model of decay conditions of wooden members in wooden houses, a decay test was set up in which samples of western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla) under 4 moisture levels were examined. Each week the samples were weighed and if the weights indicated that their moisture contents were lower than the expected levels, distilled water was added. Every 8 weeks 3 samples from each condition were oven dried at 60°C for 48 hours, up to 48 weeks. After 48 weeks, 3 samples from each condition were oven dried every 16 weeks. The results obtained were as follows: After examining the samples for 96 weeks at 27°C, the mean weight loss of the hemlock samples kept at about 50-100% moisture content level was larger than those of the other levels. If the samples were dried every 8 weeks, the amount of decay in them was not significant. Decay was also not significant in the samples kept at approximately 20-30% moisture content level.
K Suzuki


Dimensional stability and decay resistance of hot-melt self-bonded particleboard by surface benzylated pine chips
1991 - IRG/WP 3652
Akamatsu (Pinus densiflora Sieb. et Zucc: Japanese red pine) particles were pretreated with 40% NaOH solution and benzylated with benzyl chloride, and the surface of particle was converted into meltable materials. Hot-melt self bonded particleboard having smooth and high glossiness surface was prepared by hot pressing at 150°C and 1.96 MPa without using any conventional adhesives. Dimensional stability and decay resistance of the benzylated particleboard were evaluated. Particleboards made of benzylated particles having more than 38% of weight percent gain (WPG) showed that dimensional stability and decay resistance were superior to the conventional particleboard made by using phenolformaldehyde resin as a binder, because hydroxyl groups of wood were substituted by hydrophobic benzyl groups with benzylation. Though bending strength of the board was a little lower than control board due to the damage of benzylated particles during benzylation, its internal bonding strength was very high, because the hot-melting strengthened the inter-particle bonding.
M Kiguchi, K Yamamoto


How to Document the Performance of Super-Critical Treated Wood in above Ground Situations?
2005 - IRG/WP 05-20316
The paper presents practical experiences from the preparation of a new preservative treated wood product for introduction to the market. The product in question is Superwood™, which is treated with organic biocides using CO2 in a supercritical state as a solvent. The question is how to evaluate the performance of a new product such as Superwood™ in order to get an acceptance on the market and fulfil the formal requirements. In the European Union countries, the EN 599-1 is the standard that needs to be complied when approving a new product for the market, but it only focuses on the toxic limit against representative decay fungi according to EN 113. However, decay test, above ground and other forms of field tests are optional, this is not in line with the traditional test philosophy in the Scandinavian countries. The open question is to which extent treatment to the level of the toxic threshold value also ensures a long service life and expected performance of the treated commodity. Superwood™ is evaluated using a strategy, in which basic laboratory tests are done to get the toxic value (according to EN 599-1) and in addition a number of field tests are done including accelerated testing in the tropics. These tests are focussed on the evaluation of the performance criteria such as durability and service life and maintenance requirements. These questions must be answered by the producer without having a full record of performance test for their new products. A short status on the test performed on super-critical treated wood (Superwood™) is presented. Based on a comparison between field test in Scandinavia and in the tropical Malaysia a service life of more than 25 years for a specific supercritical treated product is estimated. It is stated that the existing European standardisation system is insufficient when it comes to service life prediction. A number of important questions need to be addressed by the European standardisation system as soon as possible because the market and the public opinion change quickly due to environmental concern.
N Morsing, A H H Wong, F Imsgard, O Henriksen


Types of decay observed in CCA-treated pine posts in horticultural situations in New Zealand
1984 - IRG/WP 1226
The few reported failures of 11-12-year-old horticultural posts in New Zealand in 1982 were caused by brown-rot. A subsequent survey of CCA-treated posts in all the major horticultural areas has revealed decay of many posts. A microscopic examination of these posts has shown decay by brown-rot, white-rot, soft-rot and bacteria. Several types of bacterial decay have been observed.
J A Drysdale, M E Hedley


Effects of acetylation on the dimensional stability and decay resistance of kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) fiberboard
1996 - IRG/WP 96-40059
The objective of this study was to investigate the influence of the acetylation treated kenaf fiber, Phenol formaldehyde resin content level, and three fungi species on the dimensional stability and decay resistance of high density non wood composition boards. A standard ASTM method was used to evaluate weight loss and thickness change. The linear shrinkage and expansion of each species were also determined. All specimens were exposed to decay chambers for 16 weeks. Test results indicated that most of the main factors significantly influence the thickness, length changes, and decay resistance of the high density kenaf fiberboards.
P Chow, T Harp, R Meimban, J A Youngquist, R M Rowell


The dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans. Examples of attack and remedial treatment
1988 - IRG/WP 1347
The film deals with several aspects of dry rot attack and eradication in buildings. The detailed biology and morphological charasteristics of the fungus are portrayed. The various forms of mycelial growth, the role of the strands in the nourishment and spread of the fungus, as well as the many types of fruitbody formation are outlined. Environmental and nutritional requirements of the fungus as well as the potential infection danger posed by the basidiospores are discussed. The second part of the film, outlining the main reasons for dry-rot attack and spread in building together with the significant damage caused, shows the full extent of the problem to expert and lay-person alike. The necessity of correct survey and inspection of decayed areas to determine the full range of attack is stressed. Examples of various remedial treatments and the present technological state of eradication techniques, e.g. pressure injection, in Germany are discussed.
G Buchwald, B M Hegarty, W Metzner, R Pospischil, H Siegmund, P Grabow


Physical properties of ß-1,4-Xylanase produced by Postia (=Poria) placenta: Implications for the control of brown rot
1987 - IRG/WP 1318
The degradation of hemicelluloses is an early event in wood decay by brown-rot fungi. An understanding of the physical properties of hemicellulases may suggest target mechanisms for the development of new control agents. Endo-b-1,4-xylanase was partially purified by column chromatography from wood decayed by Postia (= Poria) placenta. The enzyme was extremely resistant to denaturing conditions; no loss of activity was detected after 2 h in 9 M urea or 6 M guanidine-HCl. Boiling the enzyme for 5 min in 2.5% SDS + 0.5% b-mercaptoethanol reduced its activity by 65%, as measured by the production of reducing sugars. The activity of a-D-galactosidase, another enzyme detected in large quantities in the decayed wood, was reduced by 98% under these conditions. Optimum pH and temperature ranges were pH 2-6 and 50-60°C, respectively. The enzyme appears to be a glycoprotein containing 50-60% carbohydrate (w/w); the carbohydrate moiety may protect the enzyme from adverse environmental conditions. The control of brown rot by in situ inactivation of xylanase may not be feasible because of the enzyme's extreme stability.
J A Micales, F Green III, C A Clausen, T L Highley


The decay resistance of chemically modified aspen composites to the white rot fungus Coriolus versicolor (L.) Quelet
1998 - IRG/WP 98-40122
Chemical modification of Aspen wood (Populus tremula L.) in the form of solid wood, veneers and sawdust was undertaken by a two step procedure consisting of esterification with maleic anhydride (MA) and subsequent oligoesterification with MA and glycidyl methacrylate (GMA) or allyl glycidyl ether (AGE). Modified wood was thermoplastic and was thermally formed by hot-pressing to produce veneer or solid wood samples with smooth glossy surfaces, while plastic-like wafers were obtained by hotpressing modified sawdust. Chemical modification alone was shown to enhance the biological resistance of Aspen to decay by Coriolus versicolor. In addition, hot-pressing enhanced decay resistance of both unmodified wood and esterified wood veneer samples, although no improvement was found by hot pressing oligoesterified wood. The most effective treatment for the improvement of decay resistance was chemical modification of the sawdust in conjunction with hot-pressing. A microscopic examination of chemically modified and control samples following exposure to the fungus showed more extensive colonisation and decay in untreated, unpressed samples.
M C Timar, A J Pitman, M D Mihai


Additions and corrections to recent names for some common decay fungi
1977 - IRG/WP 167
A Käärik


A summary of current information on actinomycetes and wood
1978 - IRG/WP 177
B King, R A Eaton, A A W Baecker


The dry rot fungus and other fungi in houses. Part 2
1993 - IRG/WP 93-10001
J Bech-Andersen


Valid names for some common decay fungi, their synonyms and vernacular names
1978 - IRG/WP 172
A Käärik


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