Banner for LabNotes
From Lab Notes
Contact Information
Forest Products Laboratory
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726-2398
Phone: (608) 231-9200
Fax: (608) 231-9592
Email

 

You are here: FPL Home  / Information Products & Services  / Publications

Requested Product

Title: Waste-wood-derived fillers for plastics

Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. FPL-GTR-91. Madison, WI: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory. 15 p.

Author(s)English, Brent; Clemons, Craig M.; Stark, Nicole; Schneider, James P.

Publication Year: 1996  View PDF »

Category: General Technical Reports

Abstract: Filled thermoplastic composites are stiffer, stronger, and more dimensionally stable than their unfilled counterparts. Such thermoplastics are usually provided to the end-user as a precompounded, pelletized feedstock. Typical reinforcing fillers are inorganic materials like talc or fiberglass, but materials derived from waste wood, such as wood flour and recycled paper fiber, are also effective as fillers. The goal of this project was to generate commercial interest in using waste-wood-paper- derived fillers (WPFs) to reinforce thermoplastics. The research strategy was twofold: developmental research and outreach. Specific objectives were (1) to improve wastepaper fiber preparation, feeding, and compounding methods, and optimize composite performance, and (2) to communicate to end-product manufacturers the advantages of WPF thermoplastics. The research was led and supported by the Forest Products Laboratory (FPL), with input from a consortium of 15 fiber suppliers and plastics manufacturers. Additional funding was provided by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. Equipment was leased and installed at FPL. Eight general purpose formulations were developed—they included extrusion and injection molding grades of both polyethylene and polypropylene, reinforced with WPFs. An information packet containing performance data, appropriate processing conditions, sample pellets, sample parts, and a questionnaire was sent to nearly 500 commercial plastics manufacturers in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan. In response to requests for in-house trials, FPL researchers conducted nearly 18 site visits. The researchers ensured proper handling of the material, provided consultation, and gathered information about processing and performance. The trials went very well, and parts were successfully manufactured at all facilities. Products included automobile trim components and housings, vacuum cleaner parts, paint brush handles, bicycle parts, cosmetic cases, and other household items. Great interest has been shown in the use of WPF thermoplastics; one consortium member is establishing a 4 million kg/yr (9 million lb/yr) facility. Total market demand is conservatively expected to exceed 45 million kg/yr (100 million lb/yr).

Keywords: Wood fiber, plastic processing, properties of composites, recycling

File size: 472 kb(s)

This publication is also viewable on Treesearch:  view
RITS Product ID: 13467
Current FPL Scientists associated with this product (listed alphabetically)
Clemons, Craig M.
Materials Research Engineer
Stark, Nicole M.
Research Chemical Engineer
 

Additional items that might interest you
View the video celebrating FPL's 100 years of public service in 2010, from the producers of the Greatest Good....view

Research Highlights from FPL....view

Termite Eradication: A search for the Holy Grail.... view

Moisture Management in Residential Construction Series videos...view

Wood Floor Systems in Residential Construction Series videos....view
- FPL's Mission and Strategic Plan -

FPL's mission is to identify and conduct innovative wood and fiber utilization research that contributes to conservation and productivity of the forest resource, thereby sustaining forests, the economy, and quality of life. ... ..more »

- FPL Research Emphasis Areas -
Advanced Composites

As an integral part of the FPL mission, we improve the long-term sustainability of our Nation's forests by creating valuable composite products from biobased materials ... ..more »


Advanced Structures

The FPL has been in the forefront of wood-frame housing research since 1910 and has long been recognized as a world leader in such housing-related areas as engineered wood ... ..more »


Forest Biorefinery

We all know the compelling reasons that the United States needs to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. Historically, the greatest increases in energy demand have been for transportation fuels ... ..more »


Nanotechnology

A leader in wood products research for over a century, the FPL is positioning itself to become the lead Federal research facility for the application of nanotechnology in forest products ... more »


Woody Biomass Utilization

Forests in the United States contain a substantial amount of small-diameter, overstocked, and underutilized material.FPL research projects are exploring the potential of the small-diameter ... ..more »