NC State
Xing, D., Wang, S., and Li, J. (2015). "Effect of artificial weathering on the properties of industrial-scale thermally modified wood," BioRes. 10(4), 8238-8252.


Thermally modified wood is widely used in cladding, decking, and other construction projects that are meant for outdoor exposure. The purpose of this study was to investigate changes in the color, microstructure, and chemical composition of heat-treated, Larix spp. wood that was exposed to artificial weathering. In this study, accelerated weathering tests (UV and moisture) were conducted over a period of 3000 h. Photodegradation of both heat-treated and untreated wood was evaluated in terms of color, microstructure, and chemical changes that were characterized using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy. Ultra-violet radiation caused the degradation of lignin and extractives of wood, resulting in an immediate color change of the wood. The SEM observation of the heat-treated wood showed deformations and cracks in both treated and untreated samples. Irradiation resulted in a pronounced reduction in the absorption intensity and broadening of the FTIR spectra. It was found that the industrial heat-treatment of wood products resulted in more color stability than untreated wood during the early stages of weathering. Thermal modification was found, however, was ineffective in improving the UV resistance wood over long-term photodegradation conditions.
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