IRG Documents Database and Compendium

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A Preliminary Report on the Properties of Engineered Wood Composite Panels Treated with Copper Naphthenate
2005 - IRG/WP 05-40294
This paper reports on our preliminary investigation of the properties of randomly oriented strandboard which had waterborne or powdered copper naphthenate (CuN) incorporated into the board during manufacture. When compared to zinc borate-treated controls (ZnB), the mechanical properties of strandboard (MOR, MOE, work-to-maximum load, internal bond strength) were not adversely affected by treatment with either form of copper naphthenate. In general, values for mechanical properties followed the trend untreated controls > waterborne CuN = powdered CuN > ZnB. Water absorption and dimensional properties followed a similar trend. This preliminary study suggests that CuN is a viable alternative treatment for engineered wood composites.
J W Kirkpatrick, H M Barnes

Decay Resistance and Bonding Properties of Structural Flakeboard
2002 - IRG/WP 02-40233
Experimental structural flakeboard panels consisting of differing furnishes and resins were produced and tested for internal bond, linear expansion, thickness swell, and decay resistance. One group of panels was produced with recycled CCA-treated wood as the furnish and commercial phenol formaldehyde (PF) resin as the binder. Other groups of panels were produced with either mixed hardwoods or southern pine as the furnish and then sprayed with a co-reacted soy-flour PF resin or a commercial face or core resin. The recycled CCA-treated panels contained 5 different furnish ratios (0:100, 25:75, 50:50, 75:25, and 100:0) of recycled CCA-treated southern pine and virgin, untreated southern pine. Tests on the panels bonded with co-reacted soy flour PF indicated that 30% substitution of phenol with soy flour in the resin system did not appreciably promote decay or reduce IB strength. As expected, panels produced with a higher ratio of recycled CCA-treated wood furnish, were generally subject to less weight loss during decay tests for brown rot (Gloeophyllum trabeum, ATCC 11539) and white rot (Trametes versicolor, ATCC 42462) but yielded lower IB values. Research in currently in progress to assess the resistance of all the aforementioned panel types to the Formosan subterranean termite (Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki).
T F Shupe, Chung-Yun Hse

Durability of Wood/Plastic Composites Made From Parthenium species
2002 - IRG/WP 02-40225
Previous study indicated that the natural chemical constituents of the guayule plant (Parthenium argentatum) improved some durability properties of wood when it was treated with resin extracted from guayule. At present, there are about a dozen species of Parthenium growing in the North American continent. P. argentatum is the only species with harvestable amounts of the rubber latex. Other species such as P. incanum and P. tomentosum produce primarily resinous materials, but which could be as useful as the P. argentatum species for making composites. The predicted commercialization of guayule for its hypoallergenic latex will result in a significant amount of waste plant material or bagasse that can be put to use in making wood products and would otherwise be a disposal problem. Thus, the guayule fiber residues can be a source of natural wood preservative to improve the durability of wood/plastic composites. Preliminary laboratory tests were conducted to determine the resistance of wood/plastic composites made from three Parthenium species against Eastern subterranean termite. The physical properties of these three types of composites were also measured, namely dimensional stability (water absorption, thickness swelling, two-hour boil, and linear expansion), and the strength properties such as bending and internal-bond (IB) or tensile stress perpendicular to face. The results were compared with a wood/plastic composite made from the commercial pine wood flour or fibers.
P Chow, F S Nakayama , J A Youngquist, J H Muehl, A M Krzysik

Is there a role for termite alates in colony expansion in Wisconsin?
2014 - IRG/WP 14-10820
Termite colonies in Wisconsin tend to be large and widely spread out geographically, and separated by distances up to 1342km. We recently completed a study to determine the genetic diversity and population substructure of thirteen existing colonies of Reticulitermes flavipes using amplified fragment length polymorphism to determine patterns of termite dispersal in Wisconsin. Measures of inbreeding, heterozygosity, genetic variation, polymorphism and geographic distances showed that colonies had mixed characteristics of what was expected for colony expansion through budding versus multiple introductions at physically separate sites by means of alates or human movement of infested materials. Overall, these results did not provide evidence of colonies formed by alate breeding pairs. Instead, we hypothesize that R. flavipes is likely spread by anthropogenic means, including discarded rail ties, in Wisconsin. Nearly all known areas of termite activity in the state lie on or near major rail lines. A new generation of dual-treatment of crossties with water soluble borates overcoated with a second treatment of water insoluble (oil borne) copper napthanate or creosote may begin to limit transfer of insect colonies via Interstate commerce.
F Green III, R A Arango, G R Esenther, T G Shelton

What makes cellulose auxetic?
2016 - IRG/WP 16-40767
The 1D bundles of cellulose microfibrils (lignified flax fibre) and 2D networks of cellulose mi-crofibrils form tunicate, bacterial and microfibrillated celluloses were strained in tension, and their molecular deformation followed by Raman spectroscopy in order to fully understand the origins and magnitudes of in-plane auxetics for the information of innovation. Cellulose is found to exhibit three distinct yielding. Both crystalline and amorphous cellulose are found to be auxe-tic so long as intermolecular hydrogen bonding remain intact. Auxetics of crystalline cellulose is found to be around unity (-1) while that of cellulose amorphous is found to be around twice (-2) that of crystalline cellulose with the possibility of 1D bundles of cellulose microfibrils registering auxetics higher than -7 in the absence of lignin. Though 2D networks of cellulose microfibrils enhance strain to failure, they also significantly limit auxetics of single 1D cellulose microfibrils in networks. Differences in auxetics between crystals and amorphous must predominantly arise from differences in intermolecular geometry. Similarity of in-plane auxetics of cellulose to the off-axis auxetics of zeolites (especially thomsonite zeolites) indicates the possibility of combining both semi-crystalline materials to produce functionalized composites with photo-electromechanical properties.
A Asamoah, S Eichhorn, K Evans