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Bonding performance and mechanism of thermal-hydro-mechanical modified veneer

Liu, Hongling, Shang, Jin, Kamke, FrederickA., Guo, Kangquan
Wood science and technology 2018 v.52 no.2 pp. 343-363
Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, Tsuga heterophylla, cell walls, chemical reactions, durability, microscopy, phenolic resins, plywood, polyurethanes, porosity, shear strength, surface roughness, tracheids, wood
In the present study, fast-grown western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla) was subjected to a thermal-hydro-mechanical (THM) treatment. Bond-line shear strength and durability were evaluated, and three parameters (substrate density, adhesive type and amount of adhesive spread) were investigated. To understand how THM processing affects bond performance, surface roughness and cell morphology of wood, before and after THM treatment, were observed. Adhesive penetration depths and patterns in untreated wood and THM-treated wood were also examined. In addition, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy analysis of bond-line and microscopic observation of interphase region were conducted. Results revealed that polymeric diphenylmethane diisocyanate (PMDI) and polyurethane (PUR) had better bonding performance than phenol formaldehyde resin (PF). THM treatment improved bond durability, and THM plywood met the adhesive bond requirements of exterior plywood. THM treatment reduced surface roughness and porosity of wood. Adhesive penetration patterns were different in untreated wood and THM-treated wood and were affected by amount and type of adhesive. Pathways for adhesive flow into western hemlock were primarily tracheid lumens, ray cell lumens and the interconnecting pits. PF is the only adhesive that showed no evidence of flow via ray tissues or cell wall penetration. Since bond-line shear strength largely depends upon the weakest link across the laminas, ultimate strength or percent wood failure does not always depend merely on adhesive penetration. In addition, FTIR analysis showed different chemical reactions and bonding mechanisms, which provides a possible explanation of THM-caused changes in bonding performance at the molecular level.