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Institute of

HF Wood Research


Emission free Adhesives

Development and evaluation of emission free binders for wood-based materials and bio-based composites

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.

Background and Objective

For the production of wood-based materials and modern composites, about 95% of condensation resins are used throughout Europe in which formaldehyde is needed as a crosslinker. The disadvantage of these adhesives is the risk of the subsequent release of formaldehyde whose hazard category has been upgraded from Category 3 (substances that may be carcinogenic) to Category 1B (probably carcinogenic to humans) at the European level. Therefore, the permanent task is to develop and test various low-emission and free, if possible bio-based alternatives to the existing adhesive systems. This is a major challenge in terms of consumer protection and economics because about 50% of the goods and construction services produced in Germany are associated with adhesives.


The task focuses on the evaluation, investigation and development of low-formaldehyde and formaldehyde free adhesive systems to meet the current challenges in terms of indoor hygiene, productivity, field of application, material compatibility and sustainability. It is also important to overcome the barriers to the use of formaldehyde-free and natural-based bonding systems. The investigations include the analysis of raw materials and products, the determination of emissions and the measurement of reactivity and adhesive properties.


4.2018 - 12.2020

More Information

Project status: finished

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