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Differences in the viscoelastic properties between earlywood and latewood in the growth rings of Chinese fir as analyzed by dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) in the temperature range between −120°C and 120°C

Li, Anxin, Jiang, Jiali, Lu, Jianxiong
Holzforschung 2019 v.73 no.3 pp. 241-250
Cunninghamia lanceolata, activation energy, cell walls, dynamic load, earlywood, heartwood, latewood, loss modulus, modulus of elasticity, sapwood, storage modulus, temperature, tree age, viscoelasticity
To clarify the viscoelasticity of earlywood (EW) and latewood (LW) within different growth rings of Chinese fir, the following data were determined: absolute dry density, percentage of tracheid cell wall, microfibril angle (MFA), modulus of elasticity (MOE), storage modulus (E′) and loss modulus (E″) within the 3ʳᵈ and 6ᵗʰ growth rings (in heartwood, hW) and the 14ᵗʰ and 18ᵗʰ growth rings (in sapwood, sW). The E′ and E″ data were obtained by dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) between −120°C and 120°C, at a heating rate of 1°C min⁻¹ at the frequencies of 1, 2, 5 and 10 Hz under a dynamic load amplitude of 10 μm. All measured data were different between EW and LW. In the same growth ring, LW had a greater MOE and larger E′ than those of EW due to the higher density of LW. The MOE and E′ increased for both EW and LW with increasing tree age. The variation of MFA in different growth rings of EW influenced the MOE and E′. Both density and the MFA affected the MOE and E′ in LW. The profiles of E″ plots vs. DMA temperature reveal two maxima around −12°C (β mechanical relaxation process, βMRP) and 12°C (αMRP). The LW-MRP maxima are higher than those of EW, but in both cases increased with tree age. No frequency dependence was seen for the αMRP, whereas the loss peak temperature (LPT) of the βMRP increased with increasing frequency of DMA. Almost no difference in αLPT was observed between the four EW growth rings, and their βLPTs were similar. The LW-αLPT was almost the same in the four growth rings, but the hW-βLPT was higher than that of sW. In addition, the apparent activation energy (ΔH) of the hW-βMRP was greater than that of sW in both EW and LW, and the EW data>LW data in individual growth rings. These differences can be explained tentatively that hW and EW contain more extractives than sW and LW, and the deposited of extractives limit the motion of molecular segments within the cell walls.