Effects of Catalysts on Modulus of Rupture and Chemical Structure of Heat – Treated Wood
Research subject and fields:
Heat treatment process, which is widely used in the wood industry, has shown some negative effects on the mechanical strength of wood. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of catalysts on the modulus of rupture (MOR), mass loss and chemical structure of heat–treated Scotch pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) samples. For this purpose, some catalysts (50 % NaOH and 47 % KOH solutions, solid KOH) were added to the heat treatment process. Heat treatment experiments were performed under the nitrogen atmosphere at the temperature of 212 °C for 2 h. The MOR and chemical changes monitored by FT-IR spectra were then examined for the test groups. According to the results of this study, the use of commercial solid potassium hydroxide (KOH) in heat treatment decreased the degree of strength loss and mass loss of heat-treated wood. The strength (MOR) loss of samples heat-treated in the presence of potassium hydroxide was found to be only 5.4 %, while the strength loss in non-catalytic treatment was found to be 12.5 %.