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Renewable resins for industrial wood-based panel production

The overall objective of the project is to develop and produce a renewable and sustainable substitute for phenolic adhesive resins that will replace all the synthetic phenol and a major part of the synthetic formaldehyde in the fossil fuel derived synthetic resins used in the wood-based panel industry.

The new resin is produced by very rapid heating of lingo-cellulosic materials followed by very rapid cooling of the volatilised material to give a liquid product. This liquid has a high phenolics content from the devolatilised lignin as well as significant concentration of aldehydes with which the phenolics can react to give a resin. The lingo-cellulosic materials that can be processed in this way include wood, bark, energy crops and process wastes from the wood panel industry.

Progress to Date
All necessary feedstocks have been procured from reliable sources so that additional material can be readily obtained. Feed preparation facilities for size reduction and drying have been upgraded to process large quantities for biomass in a more consistent and controllable way.
Large quantities of bio-oil have been procured from a reliable source to provide consistent samples for testing. Other potential sources have been located and provisional agreements made for bulk supplies in future.
Good progress is being made with fractionation of bio-oil using a variety of established and novel methods. Samples have been provided to resin and panel producers for resin production and testing.
Analysis of whole oil and fractions is being carried out by a wide variety of techniques. Also new tests are being devised and tested to improve the understanding of chemical reactions in pyrolysis, lignin degradation and reactivity of bio-oil and its components in resin formulation.
Tests have been carried out on resins produced from whole bio-oil and oil fractions, which have demonstrated that acceptable resin properties can be realised.
Life-cycle analysis has been initiated by defining the methodology to establish an environmental profile for production and use of the lingo-cellulosic-based resin based on a life cycle perspective according to international ISO standards.


Scientist responsible for the project

Aston Triangle
B4 7ET Birmingham
United Kingdom (The) - GB

Phone: +44 121 204 3381
Fax: +44 121 204 3680


Project ID QLRT-2001-01596
Area 5.2
Start date 01 January 2003
Duration (months) 36
Total cost 1 641 514 €
Total EC contribution   1 164 354 €
Status Ongoing

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