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Forest Products Laboratory
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726-2398
Phone: (608) 231-9200
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Title: Not just lumber--Using wood in the sustainable future of materials, chemicals, and fuels

Source: JOM, Vol. 68(9). pp. 2395-2404

Author(s)Jakes, Joseph E.; Arzola, Xavier; Bergman, Richard; Ciesielski, Peter; Hunt, Christopher G.; Rahbar, Nima; Tshabalala, Mandla; Wiedenhoeft, Alex C.; Zelinka, Samuel L.

Publication Year: 2016  View PDF »

Category: Journal Articles
Associated Research Project(s):   FPL-4707-1B  FPL-4715-2  FPL-4716-3A  FPL-4851-CMB

Abstract: Forest-derived biomaterials can play an integral role in a sustainable and renewable future. Research across a range of disciplines is required to develop the knowledge necessary to overcome the challenges of incorporating more renewable forest resources in materials, chemicals, and fuels. We focus on wood specifically because in our view, better characterization of wood as a raw material and as a feedstock will lead to its increased utilization. We first give an overview of wood structure and chemical composition and then highlight current topics in forest products research, including (1) industrial chemicals, biofuels, and energy from woody materials; (2) wood-based activated carbon and carbon nanostructures; (3) development of improved wood protection treatments; (4) massive timber construction; (5) wood as a bioinspiring material; and (6) atomic simulations of wood polymers. We conclude with a discussion of the sustainability of wood as a renewable forest resource.

Keywords: Wood, forest products, sustainability, biorefinery, carbon, wood protection, massive timber, bioinspiration, atomic simulations

Publication Review Process: Formally Refereed

File size: 764 kb(s)

Date posted: 10/04/2016

This publication is also viewable on Treesearch:  view
RITS Product ID: 82460
Current FPL Scientists associated with this product (listed alphabetically)
Bergman, Richard
Research Forest Products Technologist
Hunt, Christopher G.
Research Chemist
Jakes, Joseph
Research Materials Engineer
Tshabalala, Mandla A.
Research Chemist
Wiedenhoeft, Alex C.
Research Botanist
Zelinka, Samuel L.
Materials Research Engineer

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- 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 »