NC State
Hein, P. R. G., and Brancheriau, L. (2011). "Radial variation of microfibril angle and wood density and their relationships in 14-year-old Eucalyptus urophylla S. T. Blake wood," BioRes. 6(3), 3352-3362.


The orientation of cellulose microfibrils in the cell wall along the stem axis has major effects on stiffness and longitudinal shrinkage and is of key importance in wood quality. The aim of this study was to investigate the radial variability of MFA and wood density (ρ) and their relationships in Eucalyptus urophylla wood. Three MFA values were estimated by X-ray diffraction at three points of each one of the 175 tangential sections, and the basic density was measured. A decrease of microfibril angles from pith to bark can be observed in most samples; however, some radial strips presented different patterns of variation. For basic density, a linear significant increase from pith to bark was confirmed. There was no significant correlation between microfibril angle and density. The relationships among the three MFA estimated on tangential sections of wood were strong. The “curvature effect” due to the growth rings had a negligible effect on the three measurements of tangential sections cut near to the pith. This study showed that a single T value measurement by X-ray diffraction, preferably at the centre of the tangential section, is precisely sufficient to estimate the mean MFA of Eucalyptus urophylla wood.
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