During the research period, appropriate reference reports on the results will be completed pertaining to the different technological procedures. Based on the final project report, a technical booklet on properties and utilization of Black Locust shall be published to provide specific information for growers, manufacturers and consumers (Partners: Hamburg, Zvolen).
Efficient utilization of the available wood resources is of high importance, especially regarding Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.), a fast growing afforestation hardwood species with a high natural durability (EN 350-2) that allows its exterior use without chemical wood preservatives. Concerning all other wood characteristics, Black Locust can be seriously considered as a substitute in Europe for a number of durable tropical hardwoods and also for some non-durable northern temperate timbers which require treatment with chemicals for exterior applications. As a large part of Black Locust afforestations in southeastern Europe is gradually coming into harvesting age, more marketable volume will become available each year. Adequate strategies need to be developed to extend the scope of application of this valuable timber.
The overall goal of this joint research work is to establish the optimal technological parameters for production of high quality and high value forest products from Black Locust and evaluate in-service performance of selected end products based on EC standards in order to promote this species for a broader range of applications. The research will include laboratory and pilot plant (semi-industrial) studies of the most important biological and technological parameters which need to be known as a precondition for high quality product manufacturing from Black Locust grown on representative sites in Hungary and Slovakia. Research work will be directed towards color homogenization and modification of Black Locust wood by hydrothermal treatment in relation to decay resistance and physical degradation (Sopron, Zvolen). In order to compare untreated and steam-treated wood, and evaluate the time dependent in-service performance, artificial weathering and long term outdoor exposure tests will be conducted (Partners: Hamburg, Sopron, Delft). Selected mechanical properties and rheological behavior for improved technical design of products as well as dimensional stability of wood under changing environmental conditions will be tested together with the optimization of process parameters for advanced drying technology, such as vacuum and superheated steam/vacuum techniques (Partners: Zvolen, Hamburg). Investigation on interaction between wood surface and surface pretreatment and coating systems for interior and exterior application will be carried out considering both technical and aesthetic aspects (Partners: Sopron, Zvolen, Delft). In view of the need of jointing small pieces into larger members and the difficulties presently experienced in manufacturing glued products with conventional technologies and materials special attention will be directed towards the influence of adhesive systems and glueing parameters on product quality and performance (Partners: Hamburg, Delft). As an example for application of Black Locust for high value products, laminated timber and selected final products will be manufactured and product performance (strength, durability) will be evaluated under service condition (partners: Hamburg, Sopron, Delft, wood industry).
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
2600 AA Delft
960 53 Zvolen