Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Water exclusion efficacy, measure for prediction of wood performance against wood decay fungi

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
4.01.02  Biotechnical sciences  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Wood technology 

Code Science Field
T460  Technological sciences  Wood, pulp and paper technology 

Code Science Field
2.05  Engineering and Technology  Materials engineering 
wood, wood moisture content, wood decay fungi, service life, physical properties, chemical properties, service life prediction
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (31)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  29875  Marko Bajc  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  280 
2.  30867  PhD Franci Bajd  Physics  Researcher  2015 - 2016  89 
3.  21242  PhD Tine Grebenc  Plant production  Researcher  2013 - 2016  491 
4.  28855  Melita Hrenko    Technical associate  2013 - 2016 
5.  19106  PhD Miha Humar  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Head  2013 - 2016  1,336 
6.  29227  PhD Mirko Kariž  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  171 
7.  07127  PhD Hojka Kraigher  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  1,333 
8.  17846  Borut Kričej    Technical associate  2013 - 2014  434 
9.  29636  Luka Krže    Technical associate  2013 - 2016  206 
10.  28503  PhD Boštjan Lesar  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2014 - 2016  491 
11.  37938  PhD Tijana Martinović  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Technical associate  2015 - 2016  36 
12.  24676  PhD Maks Merela  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  568 
13.  14574  PhD Mojca Urška Mikac  Physics  Researcher  2013 - 2016  151 
14.  00395  PhD Marko Petrič  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  881 
15.  19950  MSc Mitja Piškur  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  369 
16.  05248  PhD Franc Pohleven  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  1,196 
17.  07925  Ana Sepe    Technical associate  2013 - 2016  131 
18.  12056  PhD Igor Serša  Physics  Researcher  2013 - 2016  472 
19.  10264  PhD Primož Simončič  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  703 
20.  13057  MSc Bogdan Šega  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  205 
21.  16382  PhD Milan Šernek  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  574 
22.  32771  PhD Ines Štraus  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  52 
23.  24777  Barbara Štupar    Technical associate  2013 - 2016  29 
24.  19719  PhD Črtomir Tavzes  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013  193 
25.  33176  PhD Nejc Thaler  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  129 
26.  32016  PhD Aleš Ugovšek  Civil engineering  Junior researcher  2013  90 
27.  31988  PhD Ajda Ulčnik  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Junior researcher  2013  17 
28.  20457  Andreja Žagar    Technical associate  2013 - 2016  62 
29.  37914  Marko Željko    Technical associate  2015 - 2016 
30.  37804  PhD Jure Žigon  Biotechnical sciences  Technical associate  2015 - 2016  199 
31.  21137  Daniel Žlindra  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Researcher  2013 - 2016  171 
Organisations (3)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0106  Jožef Stefan Institute  Ljubljana  5051606000  90,976 
2.  0404  Slovenian Forestry Institute  Ljubljana  5051673000  12,074 
3.  0481  University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty  Ljubljana  1626914  66,775 
The huge variety of wood species and wood-based products allows a wide scope of creative and aesthetic alternatives to materials with higher environmental impacts during production, use and disposal. The high ratio between strength and own weight recommends wood also for load bearing applications. Therefore, the use of wood can assure sustainability in the building trade as well as in many other sectors. However, the positive aspect of biological decomposability of waste wood can turn into the opposite when wood is used outdoors and exposed to different degrading organisms. Protective measures are therefore unavoidable for many outdoor applications. The most common way to respond to these shortcomings was the impregnation of less durable wood species with biocidal agents or the use of more durable species, which normally means the use of tropical species. Both options usually stand in contrast to the desired eco-friendliness of wood-based products. In contrast to classic wood preservation techniques, which are increasingly refused by customers, innovative and non-biocidal wood treatments possibilities found acceptance. In his respective project three approaches will be targeted. Namely, treatment of wood with selected hydrophobic treatments, wood modification and use of durable species like oak, chestnut, larch. Resistance of wood as well as of modified and preservative treated timber against different wood-discolouring and wood-destroying organisms is always a combined effect of toxic or inhibiting ingredients on the one hand, and of anatomical or chemical exclusion of moisture, which is one of the most important factors for biodeterioration. In this research natural moisture exclusion efficacy will be compared to artificial one (at specimens treated with hydrophobic treatments or modified wood). Nevertheless, most studies in the past have allowed for only one of these protection mechanisms, but not for both and potential synergisms to be expected. Thus, even in this respect a more comprehensive approach is needed to consider the full range of wood properties. Finally, the durability as well as the service life of timber components depends on the climate conditions, which affect wood durability. The climate in Ljubljana is one of the most threatening in Europe according to the preliminary results. In order to compare it with other climate, results from Ljubljana will be compared to the results of the other tests sites where parallel samples will be exposed (e.g. Hilo US, Corvallis US, Hannover DE). Performance of wood in outdoor conditions is demanding task. Most of the standard laboratory tests are designed for evaluation of performance of wood impregnated with biocides. They are considered as torture tests, thus they usually do not predict performance of non biocidal solutions. Modern solutions are designed on the different approach. Biocidal solutions are designed to kill pests, while the novel approach is to repel. For example: wood decay fungi require moist wood for their decay. Thus, if wood is kept dry, decay cannot occur. Moisture exclusion efficacy can be performed artificially, with testament with biocides. Additionally, some wood species expresses better moisture efficacy than the others. Thus several materials will be compared in this research. In order to predict performance in outdoor conditions, parallel laboratory test will be performed. Another issue is related to assessment of wood decay. Most of the traditional outdoor test based on the visual assessment of wood decay (knife pick tests). Thus fungal decay in the initial phases cannot be observed. Therefore, methods based on the determination of the fungi with up to date molecular techniques will be performed. These results will be compared with the results of the field test that are already running in the field test site for 6 years. There are approximately 3000 specimens exposed.
Significance for science
- The realisation of the project expanded the understanding of chemical and morphological of wood and wood ingredients. -Studying the interactions between wood and chemicals used broaden the knowledge of the chemistry of preservative solutions and wood, as well as their interactions. - The development and/or optimisation of the experimental and instrumental methods, bring new findings in the field of instrumental methodology and significantly enhanced the ability to use several analytical (FTIR, NMR, XRF, DGGE) and experimental (moisture performance measurements) methods in science of lignocellulosic materials. - Investigation of the sorption properties of wood treated with various hydrophobic treatments improved understanding of the sorption properties and water uptake that is essential for understanding durability issues. - Studies of fungal colonization of wood treated with various biocidal and non-biocidal solutions improved understanding of fungal decay and fungal ecology. - Field test results was compared to laboratory ones, what enabled us to improve the reliability of laboratory procedures. - All findings (relevant) on the changes of wood during ageing and fungal colonization of wood was or will be published in international publications. In parallel, the most important data was also presented to the Slovenian public in the Slovenian language. - Research in the framework of the proposed project strengthen scientific international and national collaboration in the field of wood pests and wood preservation. The project group will be included in several COST actions. Miha Humar is a working group leader in one of them. - One PHD student almost finished her PhD thesis and several students prepared their diploma thesis within the framework of this project.
Significance for the country
- Successful completion of the project enables our industrial partner, the company Silvaprodukt d.o.o., to better and more reliable marketing of their products. However, the obtained data enables development of new product. This will open a completely new field for selling wood preservatives. - Development of the moisture based indicators enables prediction of service life and maintenance intervals for selected materials, which enables use of these materials for purposes for which they have not previously been used, due to the lack of knowledge. - Predictive service life data isuseful for other companies involved in wooden construction. This increased the consumption of domestic wood, which does not require much energy for machining, and decrease dependency on imported material and energy in Slovenia. - The Silvaprodukt company gained plenty of information regarding their product Silvanolin, heat treated wood, and newly developed product Silvacera wax. This improved competitiveness of the company. They are therefore able to offer better and more accurate warranty conditions, which are based on the most accurate testing. This improved their position on the market. The company is hence able to increase employment and introduce new technologies and products on the market. - Not only the beneficiary, but other companies in the wood-related sector and also building-construction industry, have the opportunity to benefit from the results of this project, since they are publicly available. It is therefore expected that the discoveries and developments made within the framework of the project have a similarly stimulating effect on other companies, especially within the wood processing sector.
Most important scientific results Annual report 2013, 2014, 2015, final report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Annual report 2013, 2014, 2015, final report
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