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Forest Products Laboratory
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726-2398
Phone: (608) 231-9200
Fax: (608) 231-9592
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Wood-Plastic Composites Improved with Fiber Pre-Treatment

Beetle-killed lodgepole pine fiber treated with potassium methyl siliconate. Cheng Piao, Louisiana State University
Beetle-killed lodgepole pine fiber treated with potassium methyl siliconate. Cheng Piao, Louisiana State University
Snapshot: Scientists determine the dimensional stability of wood-plastic composites can be improved by treating wood sawdust and particles derived from beetle-killed trees with potassium methyl siliconate before incorporating the wood into high-density polyethylene.
Summary:

Wood from beetle-killed trees was used to fabricate wood-plastic composites. Beetle-killed lodgepole pine trees were harvested, chipped, and defibrated. Sawdust collected during chipping and fibers were modified with potassium methyl siliconate (PMS) and injection-molded with high-density polyethylene into composites. Treatment of the fiber/sawdust with PMS decreased water sorption and increased dimensional stability. Increasing fiber-to-sawdust ratios also decreased water sorption. The performance of composites containing wood from beetle-killed trees was similar to the performance of composites containing wood derived from a healthy resource.
Princpal Investigator(s):
 Stark, Nicole M.
 Cai, Zhiyong


Research Location:
  • Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, WI
  • Lousiana State University


External Partners:
  • Louisiana State University

Fiscal Year: 2013
Highlight ID: 453
 
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