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Institute of

HF Wood Research

Projects in research area Quality of Wood and Wood Products

Projects

Alternative timber to natural forest teak for shipbuilding

In shipbuilding, teak (Tectona grandis, family LAMIACEAE) is traditionally used for the production of high-quality wood decks. As a result of the over-exploitation in its area of natural distribution, the availability of teak has decreased considerably and acquisition in accordance with EUTR guidelines has become very difficult.

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Alternative timber to natural forest teak for shipbuilding

Wood Identification

Macroscopic and microscopic identification of internationally traded timber, wood products, and paper for the implementation of EUTR / HolzSiG / CITES guidelines (Thünen Centre of Competence on the Origin of timber)

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Wood Identification

Effects of climate change on wood formation and propeties

In order to adapt European forests to climate change, suitable tree species are needed. In particular, changing environmental factors have a significant impact on forest condition as well as the quantity and quality of wood.

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Effects of climate change on wood formation and propeties

Automated image recognition for wood species identification

Can wood species be identified with absolute certainty by means of machine learning? We are working on this question in the FNR project in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute. The aim: automated image recognition systems for wood species identification.

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Automated image recognition for wood species identification

Databases wood identification

For the identification of internationally traded timber, wood products and paper, the databases and references must be continuously extended and updated. One focus is the extension of a fiber (vessel) atlas for the identification of woods in fiberboards and paper.

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Databases wood identification

Durability of wood and wood products

Changes in the legal situation and the emergence of new materials require valid information on biological resistance in order to optimally use wood and wood products according to their durability

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Durability of wood and wood products

Analysis of fine structures of wood and wood products

As a result of globalized markets, so called "lesser known species" and wood products with unkown properties are increasingly being traded.

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Analysis of fine structures of wood and wood products

CITES-protected timber

The CITES Convention lists endangered tree species and restricts their trade. The Thünen Institute of Wood Research provides assistance in the implementation and monitoring of the CITES guidelines.

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CITES-protected timber

Influences of tree growth conditions on wood properties

Due to the influence of climate change, the growing conditions of trees in Germany and Europe will change. Consequently, the technological properties of wood will change with challenges for downstream industries. To ensure the most efficient use of wood as a resource, we are investigating the relationships between environmental factors and wood properties.

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Influences of tree growth conditions on wood properties

Identification of timbers in international traded charcoal

Grilling with charcoal is the trend. According to figures from the German Federal Statistical Office, consumption in Germany in 2016 was 250,000 tonnes – and rising. Most of the wood used does not come from "domestic forests". Around 85 % of the sold charcoal is imported from abroad, often from tropical and subtropical regions, but also from Eastern European forests.

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Identification of timbers in international traded charcoal

Identification references of wood species from charcoal

Charcoal is a regularly imported material into the German market. The woods, which are used for charcoal production are often harvested from natural forests in South America and Central Africa. Basic investigations of the Thünen Institute have shown that many European trade assortments are misclassified and regularly contain tropical wood species.

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Identification references of wood species from charcoal

Strategies for the production of high value timbers

The aim of the joint project is to increase the value-added potential of European commercial tree species. To this end, methods are to be developed that contribute to the conservation, propagation and utilization of trees with special wood structures.

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Strategies for the production of high value timbers

The European Charcoal Transition

Seit 2017 werden am Thünen-Institut für Holzforschung routiniert Untersuchungen an Holzkohle und Briketts durchgeführt. Mit Hilfe der anatomischen Untersuchungen können die verarbeiteten Holzarten und teilweise deren Herkünfte sicher geprüft werden.

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The European Charcoal Transition

Completed projects

Alternative, formaldehyd-free binders for wood based composite materials

In the production of wood-based composite materials formaldehyd containing binders are still state of the art. While formaldehyd emissions have been drastically reduced the search for low-priced formaldehyd-free binders is still ongoing.

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Alternative, formaldehyd-free binders for wood based composite materials

Update of the database CITESwoodID

Important trade-timbers, e.g. true mahagony are protected according to the CITES-regulations (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species). The trade of the protected timber is subjected to authorization or strongly prohibited and requires a clear identification of the wood taxa.

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Update of the database CITESwoodID

Emission free Adhesives

Wood-based materials are predominantly produced with formaldehyde-based adhesives. This group of adhesives are potential hazardous to health due to the recent risk assessment of formaldehyde (class 1B, likely to be carcinogenic to humans). Therefore, formaldehyde-free binder alternatives are evaluated, developed and tested in our institute.

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Emission free Adhesives

Kick resistance of horse stable infill planks

A methodology for determining the kick resistance to horses will be developed to design appropriate horse boxes with in-fill planks in order to minimise the risk of injury and to increase the development potential of manufacturers of horse boxes.

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Kick resistance of horse stable infill planks

Evaluation of timber towers in outdoor use

Fungal attac of direct weathered timber constructions can cause an early failure. Therefore several timber towers in Germany were evaluated regarding their current state with respect to the efficacy of actual regulations and the ability of construction companies to fulfill standardised guidelines.

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Evaluation of timber towers in outdoor use

FTP Germany

Collection and adaptation of future-oriented research topics of the German Forestry/Wood-Chain, national harmonization und provision of such topics for builing reaserch strategies and programmes on national and European level, organisation of workshops and brokerage events

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Identification of Tropical Hardwood in paper

Does your paper contain protected tropical wood species? For verifying their presence in paper adequate methods are needed. The scope of the project - sponsored by the “Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt“ - is to establish references for identification of tropical timbers in paper.

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Identification of Tropical Hardwood in paper

Developing competences for the Peruvian Forestry and woodworking sector

A large part of Peru east of the Andes is tropical forest area which is partly over-utilised, partly has degraded soil after agricultural utilisation or is untouched or under-utilised. Despite enormous wood resources, Peru imports most of its timber demand. Export is focussed on high density parquet wood species. The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Thuenen Institute of Wood Research support the local institutions CITEmadera and CITEforestal in the formation of experts for the Peruvian forestry and woodworking sector.

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Developing competences for the Peruvian Forestry and woodworking sector

Standardisation related to wood

For technological progress, standardised poducts and processes, and for cross boarder exchange of goods and services harmonized standards related to round and sawn timber are indispensible.

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Standardisation related to wood

Quality of Douglas fir wood

Douglas fir is frequently regarded as a tree species tolerating climate change-related environmental conditions. However, technological properties of its wood in relation to various silvicultural aspects has not been investigated systematically.

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Quality of Douglas fir wood

Changes of the environment and climate on wood formation and wood properties

All wood properties relevant for its usability are developed under the influence of natural and anthropogenic environmental factors during its formation in the living tree. Hereby, environmental changes are permanently archived in the wood as long as the tree is living or used as building timber or preserved in the ground for centuries. Such an archive in trees can be used to reconstruct past climate conditions and to predict future modifications in wood structure and eventually wood quality.

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Changes of the environment and climate on wood formation and wood properties

Improving eucalypt and poplar wood properties for bioenergy

Plants can be genetically modified and may develop a differing phenotype. Such processes can also lead to changed tissue properties. Trees can be treated in the same way and the wood of those trees can be specifically modified. The "Tree for Joules" research project aims at a specific modification of poplar and eucalypt trees to optimize their suitability for energy purposes.

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Improving eucalypt and poplar wood properties for bioenergy

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