welding for wood

Welding of wood, without the use of adhesives is considered as a sustainable alternative process to wood gluing as the substrate, in addition of being a sustainable bio-resource, is itself the binding medium. Despite the rapid recent progress in developing effective welding procedures, clear advances in understanding the fundamentals mechanisms are needed. This process, developed in the last years, presents substantial energy savings and can lead to positive impacts on environment and health, both for workers and consumers. Welding of wood by friction allows bonding of timber in a few seconds. The adhesion is mainly due to the entanglements of wood fibers which are embedded in the melted and recured intercellular polymers matrix. Mechanical, thermomechanical, thermophysical and thermochemical mechanisms at work during the different welding processes will be studied. Such knowledge is required for the development of predictive computational models, both of the welding process itself as well as of the structures that can be built using such techniques. The role of moisture during welding and during the life of the welded wood component has to be further investigated. The understanding of the fundamental mechanisms at play will provide the stepping stone required for development of different joint geometries and products, as well as up-scaling of welding machines for industrially significant dimensions, such as building and civil engineering structures. Before transferring welding of wood from the laboratories to the industry, developments in mechanical and structural engineering, as well as in process and material sciences, need to be carried out. The main objective of this project is to understand the formation and the behaviour of the welded interface from different welding processes in order to be able to predict the mechanical behaviour of welded connections and components. The research partners will unify their efforts to achieve this objective by working on the molecular, cellular, macroscopic and building scales. This project brings together wood scientists, engineers and specialists in the field of welding of wood, in order to produce a substantial contribution to the understanding of welding of wood, especially for structural applications.

For further information please contact: Dominique Derome

Project webpage: BFH: Sinergia - Welding for wood

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