NC State
BioResources
Zhang, J., Lei, Y., Shi, M., and Song, X. (2016). "Influence of fiber bundle morphology on the mechanical and bonding properties of cotton stalk and mulberry branch reconstituted square lumber," BioRes. 11(3), 7769-7780.

Abstract

The mechanical properties of natural fiber composites can be strengthened in the longitudinal direction if the fiber is formed in a parallel manner. Reconstituted cotton stalk lumber and mulberry branch lumber were fabricated using hot-press technology, and the effects of fiber morphology on their mechanical and bonding properties were investigated. The fiber bundle size had a great influence on the mechanical and bonding properties of the final products. The maximum specific modulus of rupture (MOR) and specific modulus of elasticity (MOE) of the reconstituted lumber were obtained for medium-size fiber bundles, and the maximum MOR and MOE of reconstituted cotton stalk lumber was 130.3 MPa·g-1·cm-3 and 12.9 GPa·g-1·cm-3, respectively. The maximum MOR and MOE of the mulberry branch lumber was 147.2 MPa·g-1·cm-3 and 14.7 GPa·g-1·cm-3, respectively. Mechanical interlocking structures in the lumber were observed via fluorescence microscopy, showing that phenol-formaldehyde adhesive had penetrated into several cell layers of the fiber bundle under heating and pressure. The adhesive penetration capacity was stronger when the fiber bundles were smaller in size and density. The reconstituted lumber fabricated from both materials exhibited excellent mechanical performance in the parallel direction. Therefore, reconstituted cotton stalk and mulberry branch lumber are attractive potential materials for the construction industry.


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