Christopher G. Hunt
Christopher G. HuntForest Biopolymer Science and Engineering
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
My current research is focused on the movement of chemicals (including water) through cell walls, and the fundamental structure of cell walls that controls mobility and many other wood properties. Movement of chemicals through the cell wall is a critical part of wood decay, adhesive durability, fastener corrosion, paint adhesion, and the pretreatment of wood for conversion to value-added chemicals or fuel. Current specific applications include:Explaining the mechanism of wood modifications that stop wood from rotting, so that we can develop more cost effective modifications.Improving pretreatment protocols for converting wood into chemicals, to improve the efficiency of biomass conversion.Improving our understanding of how durable bonds are made between wood and adhesives or paints, so that wood products deliver better performance over a longer lifespan.Understanding the mechanism of soy protein adhesive formation, so that we can replace even more fossil-fuel-based wood adhesives with soybeans or other bio-based alternatives.Current techniques in use in my lab are solute exclusion, microscopy/imaging, confocal microscopy, synchrotron x-ray fluorescence, image analysis, GPC, DMA, and a variety of mechanical tests. I cooperate closely with others using a wide variety of other techniques including but not limited to DSC, electrical conductivity, neutron scattering, and nanoindentation.
I have been closely involved with: 3-D wet forming and pressing of fiber, paper photo-aging,the effect of biopulping (growing white rot fungus on wood chips prior to mechanical pulping) on wood, fungal decay mechanisms, mapping oxidation from decay fungi at the micron scale, mapping protein and metabolite penetration, adhesive interactions with wood, heat resistance of adhesives, adhesive durability, sealant durability, and understanding bonding in soy adhesives.
My research on wood properties allows companies to produce better quality, less expensive traditional wood products for American consumers. I also develop knowledge which will enables industry to create whole new materials from wood. This makes American forest products more attractive, bringing jobs and income to rural America while utilizing an abundant domestic renewable resource.
- University of Wisconsin - Madison, Ph.D. Analytical Chemistry , 2006
- University of Wisconsin - Madison, B.S. Physics and Mathematics Secondary Education , 1991
- Research Chemist, Forest Products Laboratory 2005 - Current
- Research Support, Forest Products Laboratory 1993 - 2004
|Publication Year: 2016|
Highlight ID: 661
|New Test of Raw Material Quality Improves the Strength of Wood Laminates|
Plywood and laminated veneer lumber are built from wood veneers. Because the test for surface quality of the veneer was not very useful, Forest Service scientists developed a quick, easy method that tells us how to determine what veneers will make st ...
Highlight ID: 666
|Using Soybeans to Replace Synthetic Adhesives for Wood Bonding|
Soybeans were used to glue the first plywood but were replaced by fossil-fuel-based adhesives after World War II. Scientists at the Forest Service's Forest Products Laboratory have helped soy adhesives return to plywood and are helping to find more a ...
|Publication Year: 2015|
Highlight ID: 618
|How Does Wood Decay Start?|
How do fungi rot wood? Using new tools, fluorescent dye attached to tiny beads, and laser confocal microscopy, Forest Service scientists were able to follow oxidation on a microscopic level. The information is helping them zero-in on the chemicals fu ...
|Publication Year: 2013|
Highlight ID: 435
|Success of Wood Veneers Influenced by Harvesting Season and Temperature: Plywood Performance and Failure: A New Understanding|
Cooperation with Finnish researchers results in new understanding of relationships between veneer processing, veneer properties, and product failure. ...
|Publication Year: 2010|
Highlight ID: 170
|Centennial Edition, Wood Handbook—Wood as an Engineering Material|
The Wood Handbook—Wood as an Engineering Material serves as a primary reference document for a wide variety of users-from the general public through architects and design engineers who use wood in highly engineered structures. ...
|Direct Application of Shakes and Shingles|
According to Chris Hunt and his co-authors on Installation, Care, and Maintenance of Wood Shake and Shingle Siding, shakes or shingles can be applied directly over properly installed and flashed Type 30 felt (or house wrap as approved by local codes). Shakes and shingles may be single-coursed,
|Wood Shake and Shingle Siding|
The classic FPL publication Installation, Care, and Maintenance of Wood Shake and Shingle Siding answers many questions homeowners have about natural wooden siding...
|Soy Proteins as Wood Adhesives|
Protein-based adhesives have a long and ingenious history. Animal protein, casein from milk, soy flour, and even blood have historically been used as bonding agents for wood product applications. These proteins have allowed for the development of bonded wood products such as plywood and glued-lamina...