Wood has played a major role throughout human history. Strong and versatile, the earliest humans used wood to make shelters, cook food, construct tools, build boats, and make weapons. Recently, scientists, politicians, and economists have renewed their interest in wood because of its unique properties, aesthetics, availability, abundance, and perhaps most important of all, its renewability. However, wood will not reach its highest use potential until we fully describe it, understand the mechanisms that control its performance properties, and, finally, are able to manipulate those properties to give us the desired performance we seek.
The Handbook of Wood Chemistry and Wood Composites analyzes the chemical composition and physical properties of wood cellulose and its response to natural processes of degradation. It describes safe and effective chemical modifications to strengthen wood against biological, chemical, and mechanical degradation without using toxic, leachable, or corrosive chemicals. Expert researchers provide insightful analyses of the types of chemical modifications applied to polymer cell walls in wood. They emphasize the mechanisms of reaction involved and resulting changes in performance properties including modifications that increase water repellency, fire retardancy, and resistance to ultraviolet light, heat, moisture, mold, and other biological organisms. The text also explores modifications that increase mechanical strength, such as lumen fill, monomer polymer penetration, and plasticization.
The Handbook of Wood Chemistry and Wood Composites concludes with the latest applications, such as adhesives, geotextiles, and sorbents, and future trends in the use of wood-based composites in terms of sustainable agriculture, biodegradability and recycling, and economics. Incorporating decades of teaching experience, the editor of this handbook is well-attuned to educational demands as well as industry standards and research trends.