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Wood preservation in China
1989 - IRG/WP 3546
Huiming Zhou, Zhongwei Jin


Wood preservation in Japan
1982 - IRG/WP 3218
The report indicates the importance of wood preservation in Japan, which is the world's largest importer. The main hazards of timber are listed, fungi, insects and marine borers. Besides wood preservation fire protection treatments are also important in Japan. Classifications are given of the durability and treatability of the timbers used. In describing the wood preservation industry, the amounts of preservatives used and the volume of the various wooden commodities that have been treated during the past 25 years are detailed. The various Japanese Standards that are used for wood preservation treatments are listed, and the performance and quality requirements of the main ones indicated. The report lists all the organizations which are concerned with wood preservation, including those concerned with research into timber deterioration and wood protection, and adds some other organizations of general interest. It is concluded that the future of the industry appears to be bright. The report ends with an Appendix giving detailed information of the wood preservation plants in Japan, 174 pressure plants and 50 other kind. Some Tables regarding fires and fire tests have been added. A list of 32 references is included.
S Amemiya, R Cockcroft


Tannin resin-boron for outdoor wood protection and fire retardancy
2011 - IRG/WP 11-30567
Boron in the form of boric acid is well known for its efficacy against wood destroying organisms, as well as for its high leachability from treated wood when in outside exposure. Moreover, due to the European directive 2008/58/EC, boric acid is only authorized at low levels. In order to keep considering boric acid as an interesting active ingredient for wood protection, the issue is now to fix it into the wood through networks that (1) would leave boron enough freedom to stay active, (2) would greatly reduce its depletion from treated wood, (3) would remain eco-toxicologically acceptable. The associations of boric acid and tannin-hexamine (hexamethylenetetramine) resin were studied for their abilities to treat wood samples. These treatments were evaluated for their efficiency after leaching against Pycnoporus sanguineus (tropical bown rot), the exposure been done in tropical conditions. The fungal protection was maintained even after leaching, and these systems were also shown interesting for wood fireproofing.
M-F Thévenon, G Tondi, N Leménager, S Wieland, A Pizzi


Wood-leather panels – A biological, fire retardant building material
2012 - IRG/WP 12-40615
The poor flame retardant properties of wood-based products are among the severest obstacles, hindering its use in the commercial building sector. Recently, some attempts to improve the fire properties, relying on inflammable salts or reactive halogen compounds, have been presented, although they either cause problems with machining or embody harmful compounds (halogen derivates). In this paper, the fire retardant properties of a novel material, wood-leather panels, are determined by the use of flame tests in a furnace according to ÖNORM EN ISO 1363:2011. The specimens were evaluated according to integrity and surface temperature. For the test specimens, wet white (WW) and wet blue (WB) leather shavings, with varying contents were used. The main finding is that both, panels containing WW and WB leather shavings, show properties superior to current flame-retardant medium density fibre boards, MDF B1,s2-d0. An optimum was found here at a leather content of 50%. In order to describe this behaviour towards fire in further detail, the calorific value of the material as well as the thermal conductivity were determined. As the leather panels produce a foam-like structure during the fire treatment, it is assumed, that this is caused by the exhaust of gases, leading to decreased temperature flow through the specimen, resulting in the observed properties. It can be concluded that the panels show superior fire retardant properties, compared to commonly available flame retardant material. Therefore further research in this field is proposed, with the aim to produce a certified product.
S Wieland, U Stöckl, T Grünewald, S Ostrowski, A Petutschnigg


Laboratory investigation of fire protection coatings for creosote-treated timber railroad bridges
2014 - IRG/WP 14-30639
As the incidence of timber railroad bridge fires increases, so has the need to develop protective measures to reduce the risk from accidental ignitions primarily caused by hot metal objects. Of the six barrier treatments evaluated in the laboratory for their ability to protect timbers from fires sourced with ignition from hot metal objects only one intumescent coating provided adequate fire protection. The intumescent barrier treatment also met environmental, performance (e.g. bond durability) and application criteria set forth in this study. These criteria also dictated the development of a flammability test, called the hot metal test that is compatible with the fire scenario specific to this study. The hot metal test evaluates protective materials on creosote-treated timber against ignition of gases generated by an 1100ᴼC heat source.
C A Clausen, R H White, J P Wacker, S T Lebow, M A Dietenberger, S L Zelinka, N M Stark


Bio-friendly preservative systems for enhanced wood durability - the first periodic report on DURAWOOD
2015 - IRG/WP 15-30677
The objective of the paper is the DURAWOOD scientific project carried out within Polish-Norwegian Research Programme, which lasts from September 2013 till August 2016. The aim of the project concentrates on the developing of a new, eco-friendly and biocide-free wood protective systems as an alternative to traditional, commonly used preservatives or coatings, containing biocides. Several wood preservatives containing traditional biocides are no longer desired on the market, due to the stricter toxicological requirements and an increasing ecological awareness of consumers. Therefore, formulating new wood protective systems, based on natural compounds, harmless to humans and the environment, is of the principle interest. On the other hand, it will also facilitate a longer period of carbon capture in wood, which will limit the greenhouse effect. Life cycle assessment (LCA), which is planned to perform for the selected model formulations, is a good example for an attempt to explain the interest. Besides, the implementation of novel solutions in wood protection will make it possible to use low quality wood material to manufacture high quality products (e.g. siding or cladding materials). In this manner such eco-friendly wood protection will be also a key factor reinforcing climate protection. The aim of this paper is to present some selected results gained so far. The model wood protecting systems were based on natural (alkaloids, propolis, plant oils) and synthetic (organosilicones, imidazoles) components as well as on neutral inorganic chemical - potassium carbonate. They were used individually or as a formulation for wood treatment. Wood samples made of Scots pine were treated by soaking or vacuum method and were subjected to mycological and fire tests. The so far results show that aminosilanes and mixtures thereof with natural oils are potential wood preservatives against microfungi and wood destroying fungi. Formulations containing aminosilanes, natural oils and potassium carbonate are potential wood fire retardants. It was also found that the most effective alkaloids were cytisine derivatives and caffeine. The highest antifungal activity among tested imidazoles was achieved by AK17 (1,10-di(3-hydroxymethylpyridinium)decanedibromide). The results of chemical analysis present evidence of interactions between compounds of the model formulations and wood chemical components.
B Mazela, M Broda, W Perdoch, L Ross Gobakken, I Ratajczak, G Cofta, W Grześkowiak, A Komasa, A Przybył


Fire protection of wooden facades in Norway
2015 - IRG/WP 15-40710
Wood products are experiencing a renaissance as construction material in Europe due to their environmental benefits. In Norwegian building design however, timber has always played an important role but has had its limitations in urban architecture. One of the reasons is a high demand to fire safety in dense house building and multi-story buildings. Though novel construction methods and fire safety design concepts have widened the field of applications during the last years, architects and engineers still face challenges in using wood in buildings that require high fire safety. A critical point of many flame-retardant chemicals in outdoor applications is their poor fixation in wood; they are prone to migration due to moisture changes, which bears the risk of salt crystallization on product surfaces often associated with damage of coatings. Additionally, loss of the chemicals may decrease the fire performance. The draft standard prEN 16755:2014, superseding TS 15912:2012, prescribes the classification requirements for the durability of the reaction-to-fire performance of flame-retardant-treated wood products in humid conditions. The development of the TS 15912 into a European standard is an important but only a first step forward to guide planners to find suitable flame-retardant treated wood products for outdoor applications. The awarenes’ of building planners and the construction industry for choosing appropriate treatments in humid conditions has to be raised; besides, a further development of flame-retardants is desirable, which show a high leaching resistance and, at best, increase the durability against decay and discoloring fungi.
U Hundhausen, K-C Mahnert


Effects of wood protecting biofinish and linseed oil on fire behaviour and leachability of the fire retardant
2018 - IRG/WP 18-30728
A wood protecting biofinish is based on a protective and decorative fungal-based coating and a linseed oil impregnation (called Xyhlo biofinish). This biofinish enables the long-term use of wood in outdoor applications without using toxic chemicals. The fire resistant properties of materials used in buildings are very important. Since Xyhlo biofinish is relatively new, only little information is available about its fire behaviour. In this study wood treated with biofinish was therefore provided with an extra treatment consisting of a halogen-free phosphate-based fire retardant to improve the fire resistance. A concerning aspect of the used fire retardant is the ability of leaching. Therefore, the leachability of the fire retardant and the effects of the biofinish on the leachability of the added fire retardant were studied. Pine wood impregnated with linseed oil and coated with biofinish provided with a phosphate-based fire retardant was tested on fire behaviour in a Single Burning Item test and a Small Flame test. Also, the effects of two types of biofinishes (biofinish A and B) on the leachability of the phosphate-based fire retardant were tested in a leachability test based on ENV 1250-2 and EN84. Results showed that wood treated with linseed oil and biofinish supplemented with a phosphate-based fire retardant meets the requirements of the European fire class B-s3, d0 (difficult inflammable). Effects of a biofinish on the leachability of the used fire retardant depends on the type of biofinish treatment. The application of biofinish B on wood impregnated with linseed oil and fire retardant diminishes leaching of the fire retardant in a watery environment. To develop a 100% leach resistant biofinish on wood that is classified as fire class B, improvements of biofinish B, the usage of non-water-soluble fire retardants and fire retardant fixation should be explored.
S Rensink, E J van Niewenhuijzen, M F Sailer


Yellow birch fire-protection using polyelectrolytes complexes
2020 - IRG/WP 20-30755
Fire protection has been a major challenge in wood construction for many years. The demand for high-performance, environmentally friendly treatments respecting the physical and chemical characteristics of the material has been accentuated in recent years. Halogenated fire-retardant (FR) compounds were commonly used from the 70’s for their low-cost and high efficiency. They are able to form radicals when heated, which recombine with high energy radicals such as H or OH disturbing the chain reactions of the combustion, reducing oxidative character of the flame. However, evidence of the toxicity of some halogenated FR has limited their use in Europe since 2010, in Canada and in several states of USA. Therefore, non-toxic alternatives are developed and among them an increasing interest for phosphate compounds is noticed. In that frame, the study of polyelectrolyte complexes (PEC) is at its early stage for wood, but their versatility and eco-friendly character are already appreciated for the fire retardancy of fabrics. This study focuses on the study of the efficiency of polyelectrolyte complexes consisting of polyethylenimine (Mw = 600 g/mol and Mw = 25000 g/mol) and sodium hexametaphosphate to improve the fire behaviour of yellow birch. The samples were prepared by vacuum impregnation or by soaking, allowing relatively large weight gains in a very short time. Cone calorimeter tests revealed that a 20 % reduction in PHRR for a weight gain as low as of 3.5 wt.-% can be achieved. Small-scale Steiner tunnel confirmed the positive aspect of PEC, by reducing flame spreads. Brinell hardness and dimensional stability were also studied to ensure that the treatments are not detrimental on these properties and equilibrium moisture content of the samples were evaluated using dynamic vapor sorption. It was demonstrated that whereas fireproofing results are interesting, some improvements must be made to control the hydrophily of polyelectrolytes complexes that affects the dimensional stability of wood.
M Soula, F Samyn, S Duquesne, V Landry


Danish wood preservatives approval system with special focus on assessment of the environmental risks associated with industrial wood preservatives
2001 - IRG/WP 01-50166-01
The following is a description of the procedure used by the Danish Environmental Protection Agency to assess the environmental risks associated with preservatives used in the pressure impregnation of wood. The risk assessment covers issues considered to be of significance for the environment and which are adequately documented so as to allow an assessment. Such issues are persistence and mobility in soils, bioaccumulation and the impact on aquatic and terrestrial organisms. Unless required in special circumstances, the assessment does not apply to birds and mammals as the normal use of preservative treated wood is not expected to involve any noteworthy exposure of these groups. Approval of wood preservatives will be based on a general assessment of the environmental risk associated with the normal use of wood treated with the preservative in a realistic worst case situation. The assessment may address other aspects such as disposal and total life cycle.
J Larsen


Proposed method for out-of-ground contact trials of exterior joinery protection systems
1981 - IRG/WP 2157
Methods for testing the efficacy of preservative treatments for exterior joinery are described using the format of a European Standard. Commercially used treatments applied to jointed test units (L-joints) which are then protected by conventional finishes are exposed to normal outdoor hazards out of ground contact. Assessment is made a) by determining eventual failure through decay and b) by destructive examination of replicate treated and untreated units, after increasing time intervals, rating comparative performance in terms of wood permeability increase and the progress of microbial colonisation.
J K Carey, D F Purslow, J G Savory


Granitgard used as a partial and perimeter barrier in the protection of buildings against subterranean termites
1995 - IRG/WP 95-10114
The graded granite subterranean termite physical barrier, commercially marketed as Granitgard, has a Certificate of National Accreditation issued by the Australian Building Codes Board, and is included in Australian Standards. After several years in developing the specifications and installation techniques for Granitgard, it may be used to protect almost all footing designs. Granitgard can be simply placed around slab penetrations and buildings perimeters to provide a durable, long-life subterranean termite barrier. This paper discusses the development of partial and perimeter applications of Granitgard around buildings, and the advantages of using a termite barrier that removes the need for costly and dangerous chemical retreatments.
D M Ewart, J R J French


Fire resistance of preservative treated fence posts
1994 - IRG/WP 94-30033
Pine fence posts were pressure treated separately with CCA-C, CCA-wax, CCA-oil and creosote. Treated posts and untreated controls were planted in the ground in a randomised block design, weathered for six months and then subjected to a controlled burning test using two fuel loads. Creosote treatment increased the time that posts were alight whereas CCA treatment had no such effect. However, CCA treated posts smouldered until destruction of the majority of the posts occurred. Posts treated with CCA-oil took longer for destruction to occur than posts treated with CCA-C or CCA-wax. Creosote treated posts and untreated controls did not show prolonged smouldering and consequently were not destroyed by the burning test, although their strength was reduced. A high fuel load increased the time that posts were alight and smouldering, and for CCA treated posts decreased their time to destruction.
P D Evans, P J Beutel, C F Donnelly, R B Cunningham


The registration of wood preservatives under the Pesticides Act of 1962 in the Netherlands
1976 - IRG/WP 364
J Van der Kolk


Conservation of wooden cultural property
1994 - IRG/WP 94-30038
A survey of the conservation of wooden archtitectual monuments, art objects and archaeological finds is presented. Each of the three areas has typical conservation problems which reqire the use of selected wood preservatives and consolidation agents. Furthermore specific protection and consolidation methods are necessary. A precise damage diagnosis with non-destructive testing methods is the first step in a careful conservation work.
A Unger, W Unger


Eco-tax - A new threat for wood preservation? The Belgian experience
1993 - IRG/WP 93-50001-32
At the end of January 1993, a bill was put for Belgian Parliament related to the introduction called "Eco-taxes" on a series of products, such as packaging for drinks (especially on PVC-bottles), non-returnable articles (shavers, small cameras), batteries, pesticides for non-agricultural use and paper.
G Van Steertegem, F De Jaeger


Regulations of pesticides (including wood preservatives) in the United States
1977 - IRG/WP 397
G B Fahlstrom


United States Federal Committee on Wood Protection
1971 - IRG/WP 43
A C Jewett


Developments in the protection of wood and wood-based products
1980 - IRG/WP 340
Technology is playing an increasingly important role in the field of wood protection. This current review highlights how modern techniques have provided greater insight into the biological and physical processes affecting the durability of wood and wood-based products. Emphasis is also given to developments in preservative testing methodology and to the encouraging changes towards both the correct use of timber and the improvement of Standards and Codes of Practice. A final section, on recent technical developments in wood preservation, considers subjects ranging from an evaluation of new specific biocides to methods of increasing the permeability of refractory timber species.
J M Baker


Evidence supporting the use of termite baiting systems for long-term structural protection
2000 - IRG/WP 00-10377
The efficacy of the Sentricon Colony Elimination System containing Recruit II termite bait (0.5% hexaflumuron) in controlling active subterranean termite infestations has been demonstrated in numerous studies. This baiting system and other termite baiting systems are now widely used, and generally accepted, tools for remedial termite control in North America, Hawaii, and other parts of the world. The role of baiting systems in prevention of termite damages and long-term structural protection, however, is more controversial than their use in remedial control. We discuss three lines of evidence in support of the use of baits for long-term structural protection: (1) successful control of termite populations with baits in remedial studies allows a conceptual leap to preventative efficacy, since baits target colonies and populations and cannot be evaluated directly for prevention in the manner of soil insecticide barriers; (2) field and laboratory studies demonstrate that termite colonies feed on multiple resources and continue to radiate outward from each of those resources in search of additional food, increasing the likelihood of rapid bait discovery; and (3) results of our long-term field studies over the past decade demonstrate that newly invading termites will reuse existing galleries in the soil left by earlier colonies that lead to monitoring stations, were detected in monitoring stations, and were subsequently eliminated without any noticeable evidence of structural infestation or damage.
J K Grace, N-Y Su


The biostatic effect of copper on decay of fire retardant-treated mining timber
1991 - IRG/WP 1507
Blocks of Eucalyptus grandis were treated with 20kg/m³ ammonium sulphate as fire retardant and challenged with Coriolus versicolor. Replicates were soil buried. A second set of blocks was treated with retardant and copper at 6.6 kg/m³ (ie 1% w/w), and challenged similarly. After 8 weeks weight losses produced by Coriolus versicolor in untreated, retardant treated and copper supplemented blocks were 45, 25, and 0% respectively, and corresponding weight losses in soil were 27, 25 and 10%. These results, and electronmicroscopical observations, showed conclusively that Eucalyptus grandis treated with fire retardant was rapidly decayed, and that copper inhibited such decay.
G D Shelver, E A Shelver, A A W Baecker


Termite and decay protection - A superficial barrier field test
1983 - IRG/WP 3257
Samples of Pinus radiata were given a superficial barrier treatment and installed in the ground at two sites for five years to observe termite and fungal attack. The three best treatments of the series were Denso petroleum tape, Koppers hot dip tar enamel, and Arquad 2C/75 alkyl ammonium compound. As new fungicides and insecticides become available they are being added to the test using the same system of treatment and exposure.
R S Johnstone, W D Gardner


Efficacy of anhydrides as wood protection chemicals - II. Performance against soft rot fungi
1998 - IRG/WP 98-30174
Pine sapwood modified with various anhydrides and with butyl isocyanate was tested for its resistance to soft rot decay. Small stakes were exposed for 20 months in unsterile soil in a fungal cellar test. Wood modified with butyl isocyanate performed better than any of the anhydrides tested, with a threshold level of protection (less than 3% weight loss) at 12% weight percent gain (WPG). Stakes acetylated to 15% WPG did not give complete protection against soft rot. Stakes modified with alkenyl succinic anhydride showed increasing resistance to soft rot with WPG up to about 10% WPG, above which no further improvements were evident. Succinic anhydride and phthalic anhydride treated stakes showed little or no noticeable protection.
S C Forster, M D C Hale, G R Williams


Marine borers and marine wood protection - Some answers and some outstanding questions - A comment
1990 - IRG/WP 4163
A brief description of the nature of hazards encountered in different parts of the marine environment is given. An attempt is then made to assess what were the essential findings of selected areas of research in the marine wood protection field and what still needs to be done. That is, if we are to more adequately understand what we are attempting to do in this field of study!
J E Barnacle


The role of communication in the field of environment protection: A case study "Wood Protection"
1990 - IRG/WP 3574
L Wöss


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