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Heat treatment of Tunisian soft wood species: Effect on the durability, chemical modifications and mechanical properties

Elaieb M.T., Candelier K., Pétrissans A., Dumarçay S., Gerardin P., Pétrissans M.. 2015. Maderas. Ciencia y Tecnología, 17 (4) : p. 699-710.

DOI: 10.4067/S0718-221X2015005000061

Last decades, wood was promoted as building material. Wood heat treatment by mild pyrolysis has been reported to improve biological durability and dimensional stability of the material and constitutes an attractive " non biocidal " alternative to classical preservation treatments. Previous studies have shown that conferred properties strongly depend on the heat treatment intensity. A quality control marker based on mass loss has been developed. For several years, the increased development of Tunisian wood industry provides a significant capacity of wood production and transformation. Forests in Tunisia consist essentially of coniferous species [Aleppo pine (Pinus halepensis), Radiata pine (Pinus radiata), Maritime pine (Pinus pinaster), Stone pine (Pinus pinea)], characterised by a weak natural durability. Improved durability and fungal resistance should allow the use of Tunisian species in the wood industry. Import limitation of European species and the use of local species allow the conservation of economic value added in the country and improve the economic balance. For this reason, several Tunisian softwood species (Aleppo pine, Radiata pine and Maritime pine) have been heat-treated under vacuum atmosphere at 230°C to obtain a thermal degradation with mass losses of approximately 8, 10 and 12%. The oven device allows recording the dynamic Mass Loss (ML) during the treatment and following the thermodegradation kinetic. The chemical composition of the studied wood samples was determined before and after heat treatment. For each wood species and treatment intensity, wood chemical and mechanical analyses were performed by measuring O/C ratio, bending and hardness tests. Afterward, tests of decay resistance were performed according to the EN 113 Standard, with different fungal attacks (Poria Placenta, Coriolus Versicolor) at 22°C and 70% of humidity for 16 weeks. Results were related to the mass loss. Furthermore, intensity of thermal degradation was evaluated by TD-GC-MS. Treated and untreated wood samples were maintained during 15 minutes at 230 °C under nitrogen in the thermodesorption tube in order to analyse and compare resulting from the wood thermodegradation volatile compounds.

Mots-clés : bois; durabilité; bois de charpente; traitement thermique; propriété mécanique; propriété physicochimique; champignon pathogène; préservation du bois; composition chimique; propriété technologique; pyrolyse; température; pinus halepensis; pinus radiata; pinus pinaster; postia placenta; coriolus versicolor; tunisie; durabilité naturelle; flexion du bois

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