This proposal aims at improving the international competitiveness of European hardwood industries which are mainly SME's and related sectors by an integrated, transnational research approach. It shall enable SME's to increase their added-value in processi ng beech timber, being one of the most valuable European hardwood resources. For the European Beech wood resource the inhomogeneous discoloration red heartwood (red core) is very common. Red heartwood significantly restricts the log quality of beech stems and end products and leads therefore to severe economic losses. The overall scientific and technical objectives of the submitted project are to optimise the processing of beech logs containing red heartwood, to develop grading devices for red heartwood t imber and to develop high-value products of red heartwood. The project work will start with an international survey on existing technologies, processing methods and products relevant for the project (WP 1). Based on this the partners will agree the fine-t uning of the industrial trials, done by the SME's with support of the RTD-performers, and of the additional measurements in the laboratories. The strategy is on the one hand to increase the yield of the valuable light Beech wood by optimising the sawing o f roundwood containing red heartwood and by automated grading, using a prototype optoelectronic system (WP 2). On the other hand, methods for increasing the added value for red heartwood products shall be developed; for example by homogenising the appearan ce by adapted and optimised steaming and drying schedules as well as by UV-treatment (WP 3). Doing so innovative products of red heartwood will be developed focussing on "Thermal Wood", glue-lam beams and furniture (WP 4). By combining the results of WP 2 -4 an integrated concept to process Beech logs containing red heartwood with special regard to feasibility, risks, costs, profit and energy input will be developed (WP 5) and will be disseminated to SME's and interested bodies in Europe (WP 6).
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeCooperative - SMEs-Co-operative research contracts
Tavernes De Valldigna