You are here: Home / Research Topics / Research Highlights / Search Results

Research Highlights

Search Results

Below are the highlights meeting your search criteria. To perform another search, click here.

Highlight IDTitleStrategic Program Area(s)YearStation
Photo of Tactical shelter door made using 3D engineered fiberboard made from laminated paper. John Hunt, USDA Forest Service
ID: 582
3D Engineered Panels from Laminated Paper Composites have Broad Potential

Forest Service researchers are studying the use of high-strength laminated paper composite material as a low-cost replacement for aluminum and s ...

Principal Investigator : John F. Hunt

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Cellulose nanofibril smart sponge absorbs oil which is floating on the top of water. Bryce Richter, University of Wisconsin
ID: 579
A "Smart Sponge" Soaks Up Pollutants

This "smart sponge" is one of a number of applications under development for the tiny wood fibers known as cellulose nanofibrils (CNF). The fibe ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Board treated with copper-based preservatives showing premature signs of rot caused by copper-tolerant brown rot fungi. USDA Forest Service
ID: 910
A Knowledge-based Approach for Developing Green Building Solutions

Scientists are using gene discovery to accelerate their understanding of copper tolerance in wood decay fungi and create green solutions for woo ...

Principal Investigator : Juliet D. Tang

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Schematic of the innovative impedance spectroscopy experiments performed at the US Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory that showed electrical conduction in wood is governed by percolation theory. Forest Service
ID: 154
A percolation model for water and electrical conduction in wood with implications for durability

Recently, researchers at the Forest Products Laboratory and University of Wisconsin have developed a new model of electrical conduction in wood ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel L. Zelinka

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Assembled Commodity Wood Tornado Safe Room.
ID: 1280
A residential tornado safe room from commodity wood products

Forest Service researchers designed a tornado safe room to be constructed from commodity wood building products and adaptable to existing homes.

Principal Investigator : Robert H. Falk

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of X-ray fluorescence microscopy maps of concentration of chlorine (bottom) and potassium  (top) ions as a function of relative humidity.  The scale bar represents 20 microns. USDA Forest Service
ID: 887
Advancing Understanding of Wood Damage Mechanisms

Forest Service researchers examined the diffusion of ions in wood using synchrotron-based X-ray fluorescence microscopy. The researchers found ...

Principal Investigator : Joseph Jakes

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of The Portland Mills Covered Bridge in Parke County, Indiana, has a Burr-Archtruss design. James Wacker, Forest Service
ID: 284
America's Historic Covered Timber Bridges

Covered wooden bridges proliferated in the United States in the mid-nineteenth century. Today an estimated 800 covered bridge structures remain ...

Principal Investigator : James P. Wacker

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Laser scanning technologies further preservation efforts of historic covered bridges. Jim Wacker, Forest Service
ID: 25
America's Iconic Covered Bridges Documented With As Built Records

Laser scanning technology provides details of historic covered timber bridges

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Ross

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of X-ray radiation method to determine moisture gradient in wood. Forest Service
ID: 162
An Innovative Method for Determining Moisture Gradient of Wood Products

Changes in moisture content of wood-based composite materials can lead to linear expansion and, more specifically, hygroexpansion. This can caus ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of CLT sample D4 prior to (left) and following (right) eight weeks of exposure to the Formosan termite, an invasive species of subterranean termite.
ID: 1279
Assessing termite impact on cross-laminated timber panels

Forest Service and Mississippi State University researchers are in the process of determining the impact of termites found in the Southeastern U ...

Principal Investigator : Juliet D. Tang

Invasive Species2017FPL
Photo of Researcher Xiping Wang inspects field exposed specimens with ground penetrating radar.
ID: 1285
Assessing the ability of ground-penetrating radar to detect internal moisture and fungal decay

Internal moisture and fungal decay are detected in structural bridge members using ground penetrating radar for faster evaluation of timber brid ...

Principal Investigator : James P. Wacker

Outdoor Recreation
Inventory and Monitoring
2017FPL
Photo of Wood and Timber Condition Assessment Manual. Tivoli Gough, USDA Forest Service
ID: 583
Assessment Manual for Timber Structures Helps Building Inspectors

The Wood and Timber Condition Assessment Manual is an extremely valuable resource for wood design professionals. Forest Service scientists are ...

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Ross

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Cellulose nanofibril-based electronics after 60 days of degradation test; fungus fully covers the  film. USDA Forest Service
ID: 896
Biodegradable Computer Chips Made From Wood

The current consumable materials used in the electronics industry are neither recyclable nor sustainable. To reduce the use of expensive materi ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Molecular model of cobalt salcomine with an oxygen attached. Tom Elder, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 1047
Catalytic Pulping of Wood

The kraft pulping process has been around for more than 100 years. It is cost effective and efficient but provides a low fiber yield and a compl ...

Principal Investigator : Alan W. Rudie

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Forest Service scientists Alan Rudie (left) and Richard Reiner stand with cellulose nanocrystals manufactured at the Forest Products Laboratory. Steve Schmieding, USDA Forest Service
ID: 578
Cellulose Nano-enabled Products: Applications and Volume Estimates

Cellulose nanomaterials are the next big (albeit, small) thing in wood. They can be combined in numerous ways to change the way many products wo ...

Principal Investigator : Ted Bilek

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images of the formation of silver nanoparticles on the surface of Tunicate CNCs. Robert Moon, Forest Service
ID: 301
Cellulose Nanocrystals

Cellulose nanocrystals are ultra-small rod-like reinforcement material that can be extracted from trees, plants and some sea animals. This new t ...

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Moon

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Sequential vacuum treatment of southern pine with naturally occurring cellulose nanocrystals followed by biocide demonstrated penetration of wood before agglomeration occurred (left), but reversing the treatment sequence resulted in agglomeration  on the surface of southern pine (right). USDA Forest Service
ID: 888
Cellulose Nanocrystals Chemically Entrap Biocide in Wood

Can cellulose nanomaterials play a role in the development of novel preservatives to protect wood products from biodeterioration?

Principal Investigator : Carol A. Clausen

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of
ID: 191
Cellulose Nanocrystals: Novel Templates for the Synthesis of Nanostructures

Harvesting the properties of widely available natural biopolymers for the design of novel systems in nanobiotechnology has been largely ignored ...

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Moon

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Flexible electronic substrate made from cellulose nanomaterial. Forest Service
ID: 8
Cellulose Nanofiber Composites Can Serve as Substrate for Flexible Electronics

Transparent films made from cellulose nanofibers have low thermal expansion and the potential to serve as a foundation for flexible electronics. ...

Principal Investigator : Ronald C. Sabo

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of
ID: 170
Centennial Edition, Wood Handbook—Wood as an Engineering Material

The Wood Handbook—Wood as an Engineering Material serves as a primary reference document for a wide variety of users-from the general publ ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Transmission electron microscope image of cellulose nanocrystals. Robert Moon, USDA Forest Service
ID: 449
Ceramic-Like Thermal Expansion Obtained from Cellulose Nanocrystal Films

One of the unique properties of cellulose nanocrystals (CNC) are their low dimensional change with changes in temperature. Understanding the rol ...

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Moon

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Comparative expression levels of Paenibacillus sp JDR-2 polysaccharide utilization genes when grown on select plant-derived substrates. U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 955
Characterization of Microbial Biocatalysts in Lignocellulosic Utilization

Bioconversion of lignocellulosic biomass would benefit from development of second generation bacterial biocatalysts. The bacterium Paenibacillus ...

Principal Investigator : Franz St. John

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of
ID: 189
Characterizing cellular properties in wood to better understand bulk wood properties

A current aim in forest products research is to efficiently modify wood to tailor it for specific end uses, such as hardening softwoods for floo ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Bacterial infection in termites experiencing colony collapse. The red coloration in the termite's head is from a colored pigment produced by the bacteria. Rachel Arango, Forest Service
ID: 302
Colony collapse of Eastern subterranean termites

Termite colonies in laboratory and field tests were rapidly eliminated using a trap, treat and release method with commercial termite toxicants ...

Principal Investigator : Frederick Green

Invasive Species2011FPL
Photo of Three dimensional model of the Button Mushroom enzyme that metabolizes degraded leaf litter. Daniel Cullen, USDA Forest Service
ID: 445
Common Button Mushroom Studied for Key Role in Recycling Carbon

Recent genome studies of Agaricus reveal specialized adaptations to litter- and soil-rich environments which may be used to remediate contaminat ...

Principal Investigator : Daniel Cullen

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Mass Loss Calorimeter modified to include thermopile on chimney walls to compensate for radiant energy errors of the in-flow thermopile. Laura Hasburgh,  USDA Forest Service
ID: 899
Comparison of Two Bench-scale Tests Used for Obtaining Heat Release Rate

There is a growing demand for material properties to be used as inputs in fire behavior models designed to address building fire safety. This co ...

Principal Investigator : Laura Hasburgh, E.

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Cone calorimeter testing simulates realistic fire scenarios. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 13
Cone Calorimetry Takes Center Stage in Evaluating Fire Retardancy of Wood Products

Evaluations of cone calorimeter tests are now documented in handbook

Principal Investigator : Mark A. Dietenberger

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of Serious wood/metal corrosion of a fastener under a deck in Branson, MO. Samuel L. Zelinka, Forest Service
ID: 278
Corrosion of metals in wood

Corrosion data are necessary for the safe design and construction of wood decks and patios. Previous research was unable to calculate corrosion ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel L. Zelinka

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Graphene produced from lignin, a complex polymer commonly derived from wood. Zhiyong Cai, USDA Forest Service
ID: 442
Creating Advanced Graphene Material from Lignin

Graphene materials are produced from carbon containing compounds by physical, thermal, or chemical process in either the gas, liquid, or solid p ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of A galvanized joist hanger corrodes on a wood deck. Forest Service researchers developed a desk reference to help people select the appropriate construction materials to prevent these failures. Samuel Zelinka, USDA Forest Service
ID: 438
Desk Reference on Fastener Corrosion Created for Engineers

Fastener corrosion is a design consideration when building exterior wood structures. Forest Products Laboratory researchers recently developed a ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel L. Zelinka

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Commercial dry kiln is used to heat treat freshly cut hardwood firewood for interstate commerce. Forest Service
ID: 279
Develop thermal verification guidelines for firewood heat treatment

To stop further spread of the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has enforced a heat treatment ...

Principal Investigator : Xiping Wang

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of A fire growth model for homeowner-sized plats is being developed with state-of-the-art testing of realistic objects. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 289
Developing a fire model for homeowner-sized plats - Protecting lives and properties through proper selection of building and landscape materials

This research is directed to development of fire growth model for the homeowner sized plat that would guide the user on better and aesthetic sel ...

Principal Investigator : Mark A. Dietenberger

Wildland Fire and Fuels2011FPL
Photo of Combustion tests and fire dynamics simulations allow researchers to characterize combustion rates, calorimetry, gas emissions, effective and total heat of combustion, and convective and radiative heat fluxes. USDA Forest Service
ID: 916
Developing the Next Generation of Forest Fire Behavior Models

Efforts are underway to develop the next generation of forest fire behavior models, and Forest Service researchers are extending their knowledge ...

Principal Investigator : Mark A. Dietenberger

Wildland Fire and Fuels2015FPL
Photo of Atomic force microscope image of nanoindents placed in a Loblolly pine cell wall. For perspective, a typical human hair is about 50 m in diameter. Joseph E. Jakes, Forest Service
ID: 290
Developing tools to assess mechanical properties of wood cell walls

Nanoindentation is a tool capable of probing mechanical properties at the sub-micrometer level, such as in wood cell walls, individual component ...

Principal Investigator : Joseph Jakes

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Proposed Van der waals interactions between a xylooligosaccharide and an appendage depended xylan degrading enzyme. U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 954
Development of Enzymes for use in Lignocellulose Processing

The ultimate best use of lignocellulose allows for the selective extraction of defined value streams. To facilitate this, Forest Service researc ...

Principal Investigator : Franz St. John

Resource Management and Use
Wildland Fire and Fuels
2016FPL
Photo of Scanning electron image of cellulose nanocrystals coordinated to the surface of an epoxy particle. Natalie Girouard, Georgia Institute of Technology
ID: 894
Discovery of Cellulose Nanocrystals as Pot-life Stabilizers for Epoxy Coatings

Waterborne epoxy coatings are high-value, sought-after environmentally friendly products in the coating industry mostly due to their ease of use ...

Principal Investigator : Gregory Schueneman

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Adhesive test with low-quality veneer.  Forest Service
ID: 1
Do Not Blame Adhesives When Veneers Are Guilty

Perfectly good adhesives may be wrongly discarded after failing a performance test when in actuality the veneer caused the failure.

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Frihart

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of Stake plots in the Harrison Experimental Forest, Saucier, Mississippi, evaluate the durability of wood products. Stan Lebow, Forest Service
ID: 291
Durable wood product evaluations

In an effort to reduce the amount of time required to obtain meaningful durability data for wood products, it has become widely accepted to use ...

Principal Investigator : Stan Lebow

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Phase-contrast light microscopy of some protists found in the subterranean termite, Reticulitermes virginicus.  A) Pyrsonympha minor, B) Spirotrichonympha flagellata, C) Trichonympha burlesquei, D) Holomastigotes elongatum, E) Trichonympha agilis, F) Monocercomonas species.  Scale bars are indicated for A and F, while B-E use the same scale bar as in A.
ID: 1278
Eco-friendly biopesticide protects wood from termites by affecting their hindgut symbionts

Chitosan kills termites by targeting their hindgut protists rather than the termite itself.

Principal Investigator : Juliet D. Tang

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of Historical data on real prices of softwood sawtimber in the U.S. South and overlapping 2012 baseline projections of prices to 2060 (in 2006 dollars per cubic meter). Peter Ince, Forest Service
ID: 26
Economic Model Predicts U.S. Forest Product Markets and Timber Demand Trends

Model provides insights on how U.S. competition and trade in forest products could be affected by expanded global use of wood for energy in futu ...

Principal Investigator : Peter J. Ince

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of The stakes in the image are southern pine pressure treated with extractives of naturally durable wood species. These stakes have been installed in ground contact in Mississippi and Wisconsin and will be evaluated for the next 10 years.
ID: 1298
Effective utilization of naturally durable wood biomass offers an overlooked source of potential wood protectants

Forest Service researchers at the Forest Products Laboratory in Madison, Wisc., are evaluating extractives as potential next-generation wood pre ...

Principal Investigator : Grant T. Kirker

Water, Air, and Soil
Wildlife and Fish
Invasive Species
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of Researchers studied the effect of diet on carpenter ant brood development. ?Clemson University, USDA Cooperative Extension Slide Series, Bugwood.org
ID: 895
Effects of Diet on Brood Development in the Carpenter Ant

A Forest Service scientist fed carpenter ants an artificial diet, and variations of this diet, with nutrient components removed to examine the e ...

Principal Investigator : Mark Mankowski, E.

Invasive Species2015FPL
Photo of Effects of Press Sizes on Internal Steam Pressure during Particleboard Hot-Pressing Process. Forest Service
ID: 163
Effects of Press Sizes on Internal Steam Pressure during Particleboard Hot-Pressing Process

Internal steam pressure produced during the hot-pressing cycle in particleboard production is critical to the newly developed bond strength that ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of The figure shows two-dimensional NMR spectra of control (unreacted) loblolly pine and loblolly pine that has been reacted with a model compound of pMDI adhesive. The labels A, B, and C (and α, β, γ positions) relate to the chemical structures at the bottom of the figure. The contours labeled with a subscript r show reacted wood cell wall polymers. The reactivity of the lignin sidechains clearly dominates over all other wood cell wall polymers. Forest Service
ID: 173
Elucidating Covalent Bond Formation and Cleavage in Wood

Working with a group at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Department of Biochemistry, FPL researchers have discovered mechanistic details beh ...

Principal Investigator : Daniel J. Yelle

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of
ID: 280
Elucidating Covalent Bond Formation and Cleavage in Wood

A new technique has been developed to monitor structural changes in the polymers present in wood cell walls. This allows researchers, for exampl ...

Principal Investigator : Daniel J. Yelle

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of FPL-2017-117
ID: 1289
Enabling cellulose nanomaterial commercialization

Cellulose nanomaterials are a high-value product that can be made from low-value wood.

Principal Investigator : Carl J. Houtman

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of The process elements for the biomass gasification concept that are incorporated into the spreadsheet model. Edward M. (Ted) Bilek, Forest Service
ID: 303
Engineering and Economic Modeling of Biofuels Production

FPL researchers developed a flexible and customizable computer model that allows users to do a preliminary evaluation of the feasibility of inco ...

Principal Investigator : Peter J. Ince

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of
ID: 188
Engineering Standard for Moisture Control in Buildings

ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 160-2009, Criteria for Moisture-Control Design Analysis in Buildings, was published in May 2009. This engineering standard ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Nanocellulose (upper left), an engineering plastic (upper right), and compound made from them (center). Test specimens made from the compound (bottom). Craig Clemons, USDA Forest Service
ID: 580
Enhancing High-Performance Plastics with Nanocellulose

Forest Service scientists are using nanocellulose to improve the performance of engineering plastics. By applying advanced processing methods, t ...

Principal Investigator : Craig M. Clemons

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Design Building on the Amherst campus of the University of Massachusetts.
ID: 1270
Environmental building declaration prepared using life cycle assessment

An environmental building declaration for the Design Building on the Amherst campus of the University of Massachusetts was prepared from a whole ...

Principal Investigator : Hongmei Gu

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
Wildlife and Fish
2017FPL
Photo of  Near-woods integrated system for processing post-harvest residues into bioenergy products. Richard Bergman, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 988
Environmental Evaluation of Converting Post-harvest Forest Residues to Bioenergy Products

Forest residues are a low-value byproduct of timber harvest operations that are typically burned or left to rot. Using forest residues as a bioe ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Sweetgum trees at free-air carbon dioxide enrichment study plot.
ID: 1276
Environmental impacts on tree bark chemistry

Evidence shows changes in tree bark chemistry from a long-term elevated carbon dioxide treatment have the potential to impact their conversion t ...

Principal Investigator : Thomas L. Eberhardt

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
Wildlife and Fish
2017FPL
Photo of Crystallographic comparison of the GlcA-independent CaXyn30A aglycone region with the ligand bound GlcA-dependent CtXyn30A structure.
ID: 1296
Enzymatic conversion of xylan into valuable products.

Xylan represents a vast store of potential value but rather than seeing beneficial use, much of this reservoir is lost in catastrophic wildfires ...

Principal Investigator : Franz St. John

Water, Air, and Soil2017FPL
Photo of FPL researchers developed a new method for producing a suitable component of bioplastics from glucose, which can be derived from wood and other forms of biomass. Thinkstock
ID: 437
Enzyme Combo Results in Bioplastics Composite

Developing bioplastics as a means of moving away from non-renewable, petroleum-based products has many economic and environmental benefits. Rese ...

Principal Investigator : Philip J. Kersten

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of
ID: 159
Estimation of environmental emissions associated with U.S. production of lumber and wood panel products including harvesting, forest regeneration, transport and manufacturing

Life-cycle research on wood products plays a vital role in developing strategies for mitigating climate change. The main driving force behind cl ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of The Cedar Covered Bridge, Winterset, Iowa, was destroyed by a fire set by an unknown arsonist on the evening of September 3, 2002. The Madison County Board of Supervisors constructed a replica of the original bridge, but this replica was also destroyed by an arsonist on April 15, 2017.
ID: 1291
Evaluating fire-damaged components of historic covered bridges

Arson continues to claim many historic covered bridges including the most recent one : Cedar Covered Bridge

Principal Investigator : Mark A. Dietenberger

Water, Air, and Soil2017FPL
Photo of Pilot scale near-woods torrefaction system operated at Samoa, CA.
ID: 1293
Evaluating near-woods processing of post-harvest forest residues for energy production

Forest Service researchers are evaluating the environmental viability of converting post-harvest forest residues into high-quality bioenergy pro ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of Flooring made of old-growth Douglas-fir salvaged from deconstructed military barracks. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 281
Evaluating the environmental impact of building material recovery and reuse

Within the green building and sustainable construction fields, there is a growing movement to recover and reuse building materials in lieu of de ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Oxygen index test of a wood-plastic composite. Forest Service
ID: 161
Evaluation of Various Fire Retardants for Use in Wood Flour/Polyethylene Composites

Wood-plastic composites (WPCs) represent a class of materials increasingly used in residential construction and furniture-making. The fire perfo ...

Principal Investigator : Nicole M. Stark

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Fabrication of recycled fiber. Forest Service
ID: 165
Fabrication Utilization of Recycled Fiber/Agricultural Fiber Panels and Exhibit

The Forest Products Laboratory's research using anaerobically digested agricultural waste fibers combined with recycled paper fibers to make str ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of
ID: 178
Fast Forward' Genetics for Renewable Fuels

Researchers at the Forest Products Laboratory used mutagenesis, strain selection and genetic manipulation over a period of seven years to develo ...

Principal Investigator : Daniel Cullen

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Flashover occuring during test 2 with a partially exposed CLT ceiling.
ID: 1273
Fire performance of CLT buildings

Fire tests demonstrate that CLT buildings can be designed to withstand fire.

Principal Investigator : Samuel L. Zelinka

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of Electron micrograph image showing the unusual failure of release coating on a postage stamp. Dark regions are pressure-sensitive adhesive; light regions are silicone-release coating that has pulled away from backing paper liner. Tom Kuster, Forest Service
ID: 22
Forest Service Continues To Make a Better Postage Stamp

Latest research reduces the environmental effect of stamp materials

Principal Investigator : Carl J. Houtman

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of This fossil forest in Ethiopia once had a very different climate. John Kappelman, University of Texas
ID: 915
Fossil Forests of Ethiopia Suggest Region’s late Oligocene Climate was Wetter Than Today

Don’t believe in climate change? Check out the woods from this Oligocene forest in Ethiopia.

Principal Investigator : Michael C. Wiemann

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Postia, a genus of brown rot fungi. Dan Cullen, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 963
Fungi Use Multiple Strategies for Deconstruction of Woody Biomass

A diverse array of enzymes catalyze the bioconversion of wood toward biofuels and other high-value products.

Principal Investigator : Daniel Cullen

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of White rot fungus, Panerochaete chrysosporium colonizing wood chips.
ID: 1295
Genetic basis of lignocellulose degradation

Exploiting the recent availability of fungal genomes, Forest Service researchers have developed computational approaches for the identification ...

Principal Investigator : Daniel Cullen

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
Wildlife and Fish
2017FPL
Photo of
ID: 185
Heat Sterilization of Firewood for Thermal Eradication of Emerald Ash Borer

FPL researchers have led a joint research effort with USDA APHIS and state regulatory staff to evaluate various heat treatment options and heati ...

Principal Investigator : Xiping Wang

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Wooden ammunition pallets are placed in a laboratory kiln to be heat treated for ISPM-15 standard. Xiping Wang, Forest Service
ID: 282
Heat treating wooden ammunition pallets for invasive species

Wood pallets serve as support for munitions loads and other military supplies transported within the continental U.S. and internationally. Despi ...

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Ross

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Cross-section of wood cell wall. U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 1048
Heat Treatment of Green Wood Accomplishes Crystal Hardening

After centuries of study, the structure of the woody cell wall remains poorly understood. Regarding cellulose crystals in green wood, X-ray meth ...

Principal Investigator : Umesh P. Agarwal

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Wood decay fungus Ceriporiopsis subvermispora colonizing wood vessels. Robert Blanchette, University of Minnesota
ID: 9
Hidden Lives of Wood Decay Fungi Uncovered by Genome Sequencing

The decoded genomes of 12 species reveal a complex repertoire of proteins involved in the deconstruction of key polymers within wood cell walls

Principal Investigator : Daniel Cullen

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of TEM micrograph of electrospun polymethyl methacrylate fibers containing 17 weight percent cellulose nano-crystals/Alan Rudie, Forest Service
ID: 283
High Performance nano-Cellulose Composites

Cellulose nano-crystals (CNC) and cellulose nano-fibrils (CNF) provide strength properties equivalent to Kevlar and can be used in optically cle ...

Principal Investigator : Alan W. Rudie

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Uniform dispersion and neutral color of a polypropylene: CNC composites produced with solid state shear pulverization (a), and the opposite case for a standard melt mixer composite with excessive thermal degradation (b). Krishnan Iyer, Northwestern University
ID: 892
High-performance Cellulose Nanocrystal Polyolefin Composites are an Attractive Filler for Polymer Composites

Nanocellulose-polypropylene and nanocellulose-polyethylene composites exhibited the greatest improvement ever reported for such composites made ...

Principal Investigator : Gregory Schueneman

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Schematic illustration of the capillary photoelectrochemical water splitting process. Tivoli C. Gough, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 980
Highly-Efficient Capillary Photoelectrochemical Water Splitting Using Cellulose Nanofiber-Templated TiO2 Photoanodes

Among current endeavors to explore renewable energy technologies, photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting holds great promise for conversion ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of
ID: 158
History of lumber submissions under ASTM D 1990 since the North American In-Grade testing program

The North American In-Grade Testing Program, begun in the mid-1970s, tested more than 70,000 full-size specimens of North American production lu ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Historically, U.S. housing construction and sales have been a major component of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP).
ID: 1288
Housing markets are critical to the wood products industry

U.S. and international housing markets are critical to the wood products industry, as new single-family units consume more value-added wood prod ...

Principal Investigator : Delton Alderman

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of The dots are microscopic beads and the lines are fungal hyphae. The beads turn from red to green when exposed to oxidation. Notice that the bead next to the fungus is more green than the others. USDA Forest Service.
ID: 912
How Does Wood Decay Start?

How do fungi rot wood? Using new tools, fluorescent dye attached to tiny beads, and laser confocal microscopy, Forest Service scientists were ab ...

Principal Investigator : Christopher G. Hunt

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of
ID: 186
Identification of economically significant death-watch and spider beetles in Wisconsin

Two widely distributed beetle families, the death-watch (Anobiidae) and spider beetles (Ptinidae), include a number of economically significant ...

Principal Investigator : Rachel Arango

Invasive Species2010FPL
Photo of Basidiospores of Corticium murrillii stained with cotton blue. USDA Forest Service
ID: 884
Identifying Unusual or Poorly Known Decay Fungi

Most wood inhabiting fungi are essential to sustain healthy forests and biodiversity, but a few cause serious diseases. Correctly identifying sp ...

Principal Investigator : Karen K. Nakasone

Invasive Species2015FPL
Photo of Two-dimensional rendering of three-dimensional chemistry of poplar wood with representative spectra of lignin, hemicellulose and cellulose. Barbara Illman and USDA Forst Service
ID: 914
Imaging Wood Chemicals in Three Dimensions

For the first time, chemicals in wood were visualized in 3-dimensions. This advance in chemical analysis will help clarify scientists’ underst ...

Principal Investigator : Barbara L. Illman

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of
ID: 160
Improved Composites from Wood Flour and Mixed Plastics

In a cooperative project with Louisiana State University, Forest Products Laboratory researchers have used crosslinking technologies, commonly u ...

Principal Investigator : Craig M. Clemons

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of
ID: 156
Improving Accelerated Testing of Durable Wood Products

Durable wood products such as posts, poles and timbers are expected to resist decay and termite attack for several decades. Testing the durabili ...

Principal Investigator : Stan Lebow

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of FPL-2017-101
ID: 1271
Improving biopolymers for packaging applications using surface-tailored cellulose nanocrystals

Demand is rapidly increasing for environmentally friendly packaging materials that are derived from renewable resources and are biodegradable, b ...

Principal Investigator : Ronald C. Sabo

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of Dynamic vapor sorption instrument.
ID: 1292
Improving experimental techniques that probe wood-moisture interactions

Prior methods using dynamic vapor sorption instruments mischaracterized the equilibrium moisture content of wood. Equilibrium is reached after m ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel V. Glass

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of Forest Products Laboratory (FPL) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) researchers who performed small angle neutron scattering (SANS) experiments to study the effects of chemical modifications and moisture on the wood nanostructure at the ORNL High Flux Isotope Reactor Bio-SANS beamline. From left to right, Joseph Jakes (FPL), Nayomi Plaza (FPL), Shou Qian (ORNL), and Venky Pingali (ORNL). Joseph Jakes, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 956
Improving Moisture Durability of Forest Products Using Small-angle Neutron Scattering

Moisture is the underlying cause of numerous durability issues in forest products, including decay, lack of dimensional stability, and fastener ...

Principal Investigator : Joseph Jakes

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Researchers are developing improved methods for processing cellulose nanofibrils. Rob Sabo, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 1029
Improving the Hydrolysis and Fibrillation of Wood Into Cellulose Nanomaterials

Cellulose nanomaterials have been receiving an increasing amount of interest from both the scientific and industrial communities because of thei ...

Principal Investigator : Ronald C. Sabo

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of
ID: 174
Increasing the Value of Slash by Use in Oriented Strand Board

The project takes a closer look at chunkwood processing first developed in 1977 at the Northern Research Station lab in Houghton, MI. Branches a ...

Principal Investigator : Craig M. Clemons

Wildland Fire and Fuels
Resource Management and Use
2010FPL
Photo of Researchers evaluated the Ming Dynasty Tombs and the Palace Museum located in the Forbidden City, Beijing, China. Thinkstock
ID: 586
Inspection Protocols Help Preserve Ancient Chinese Structures

Forest Service scientists worked with Chinese scientists and engineers to develop inspection procedures to aid in the preservation and restorati ...

Principal Investigator : Xiping Wang

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of
ID: 304
Integrating the Production of Nanofibrillated Cellulose and Biofuels

FPL researchers have demonstrated a method of integrating the production of cellulose nanofibers and biofuels. Such a strategy is expected to im ...

Principal Investigator : Ronald C. Sabo

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Flames in wood crib of creosote-treated timbers, approximately eight minutes after application of hot metal wafer. Robert White, USDA Forest Service
ID: 589
Intumescent Coating for Fire Protection of Structures

After years of development by industry, Forest Service scientists conducted specialized fire tests to prove the value of intumescent coating for ...

Principal Investigator : Mark A. Dietenberger

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of The Cox Ford Bridge in Parke County, Indiana, has a Burr-arch truss configuration. James Wacker, USDA Forest Service
ID: 433
Keeping America's Historic Covered Bridges Safe for Vehicular Traffic

The Forest Products Laboratory, in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration and the National Park Service is sponsoring a comprehensi ...

Principal Investigator : James P. Wacker

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of An excerpt from a Business to Consumer EPD for western redcedar decking. Jennifer O'Connor, FPInnovations
ID: 285
Labeling Wood Products Based on Environmental Impacts - Helping consumers make sustainable choices

Environmental product declaration (EPD) is a summary of the environmental impacts associated with producing and using a product or service. An E ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Image of blown films in lab scale tower showing unstable balloon (with die temperature at 160 degrees Celsius and (b) PLA/L-CNC-0.3 percent composite with stable balloon (with die temperature at 160 degrees Celsius).
ID: 1297
Lignin coated cellulose nanocrystals Increase Shipment Temperature Strength and Allow Blown Film Production

Wood based nanomaterials enable higher use temperatures, greater strength, and faster productions cycles of renewable plastic.

Principal Investigator : Gregory Schueneman

Water, Air, and Soil2017FPL
Photo of Uniaxial strains (?y) and stiffnesses (Q) for two paperboard specimens. Horizontal gray lines represent median failure location.
ID: 1283
Local stiffness variation of paperboard examined in uniaxial tension

Small regions of heterogeneity in paper stiffness can provide places for sheets to fail. Forest Service researchers are the first to develop met ...

Principal Investigator : John M. Considine

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of Surface color of modified (B, C, D) and unmodified (A) western red cedar before (0 h) and after (720 h) of artificial weathering in a WeatherOmeter. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 305
Lumen filling and sol-gel reinforcement of the wood cell wall

FPL researchers used a two-prong strategy to enhance weathering properties of wood. This dual treatment showed promise in protecting wood agains ...

Principal Investigator : Rebecca E. Ibach

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Assessing Wood Utilization Options for Urban Trees Infected by Invasive Species is a comprehensive manual that can be used by professionals. Forest Service
ID: 23
Making the Most of Beetle-Killed Trees

New manual gives land managers a variety of options for beetle-killed trees

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Ross

Invasive Species2012FPL
Photo of Exterior walls of test huts viewed from the southeast. Lance Barta, Home Innovation Research Labs
ID: 911
Managing Moisture in Energy-efficient Wall Systems

Moisture durability is critical for design and construction of energy-efficient buildings. Field measurements of moisture characteristics for hi ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel V. Glass

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Wood char particles and carbon-encapsulated iron nanoparticles. Forest Service
ID: 4
Metal Core Nanoparticles Created From Wood Char, a Bioenergy Byproduct

Shell-encapsulated metal core carbon nanoparticles have potential applications in magnetic data storage, xerography, drug delivery, and as a cat ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of Physical phenomena described by mathematical models for indoor humidity in homes. Forest Service
ID: 153
Modeling indoor humidity in homes

Indoor humidity levels in a home influence not only occupant comfort and indoor air quality but also the durability of the building, especially ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel V. Glass

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Homes with raised floors in New Orleans, Louisiana. Samuel V. Glass, Forest Service
ID: 286
Moisture Control in Crawl Spaces in Louisiana

Builders and homeowners in the Gulf Region often ask how to insulate a crawl space to avoid moisture problems. The Forest Products Laboratory (F ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel V. Glass

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Continuous fiber spun from nanocellulose and other polymers and additives. Craig Clemons, USDA Forest Service
ID: 443
Nanocellulose Gels Spun Into Continuous Fibers for Use in Advanced Composites

Forest Service scientists worked with the University of Wisconsin to spin nanocellulose gels into continuous fibers so that they can be used mor ...

Principal Investigator : Craig M. Clemons

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Manufacturing process of the triboelectric fiberboard.
ID: 1290
Nanocellulose-based triboelectric nanogenerator for green and sustainable electricity generation

Triboelectric nanogenerator fiberboard made from recycled wood fibers and functionalized cellulose nanofibril films demonstrates the possibility ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of Fumigating with essential oils from plants like dill kills termites. Forest Service
ID: 152
Natural fumigants protect wood against termites

Forest Products Laboratory researchers discovered that essential oils from some common plants such as dill, rosemary and lemongrass can be used ...

Principal Investigator : Carol A. Clausen

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of An unidentified waxy substance in honey mesquite cells creates a physical barrier against fungal hyphae. Tom Kuster, Forest Service
ID: 7
Natural Wood Durability Studied to Estimate Wood's Performance

Naturally occurring chemicals in some wood species make them more durable against deterioration

Principal Investigator : Grant T. Kirker

Invasive Species
Resource Management and Use
2012FPL
Photo of The acoustic measurement system developed by Forest Service scientists and their collaborators has been integrated into the harvesting processor head, enabling tree quality evaluation during the harvesting operation. Peter Carter, Fibre-gen
ID: 436
New Acoustic Technology Evaluates Wood Quality of Standing Trees

Lack of techniques to assess the quality of standing trees results in inefficient allocation of timber resources and also limits the ability of ...

Principal Investigator : Xiping Wang

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Figure 1. Wood feedstock to final product conversion:  (a) micro-chips made from the wood of coniferous tree species; (b) biochar from wood chips carbonized in a pyrolysis system; and (c) activated carbon made from biochar activated using steam in a rotary calciner.
ID: 1294
New bio-based technology uses waste wood to produce high-value activated carbon

Forest Service scientists investigated making activated carbon products from renewable woody biomass material such as forest or mill residues fo ...

Principal Investigator : Hongmei Gu

Resource Management and Use
Invasive Species
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of FPL's Rick Reiner (right) toured USDA Under Secretary Sherman (left) through the nanocellulose facility, explaining its capabilities and the promise this new material offers to a wide variety of industries. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 14
New Cellulose Nanomaterials Pilot Plant Keeps Up With Market Demand

Materials are being supplied to three government agencies and six partner universities to accelerate the development of advanced cellulose-reinf ...

Principal Investigator : Alan W. Rudie

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of
ID: 5
New Drying Process Gives Black Locust Wood Exotic Appearance

Heat treatment that prevents discoloration increases uses of this fast growing wood

Principal Investigator : Nicole M. Stark

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of The Cedarburg Covered Bridge, WI was one of the bridges included in this study. Stan Lebow, Forest Service
ID: 10
New Guide Advises Treatments and Technologies To Protect Historic Wooden Bridges

Forest Service and university researchers collaborate to evaluate methods of protecting wooden bridges from fire and biodegradation.

Principal Investigator : Stan Lebow

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of The ability of chemicals to move in cell walls enables fastener corrosion and decay to occur. Stan Lebow, USDA Forest Service
ID: 588
New Insight into Wood Damage Mechanisms

Wood fails because bad things start to happen when wood gets wet. Dimensional stability, mold growth, fungal attack, fastener corrosion, all are ...

Principal Investigator : Joseph Jakes

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of The localized stiffness of thin paper materials can now be measured with a single test. Thinkstock
ID: 444
New Method Measures Localized Stiffness of Thin Paper Materials with a Single Test

Forest Products Laboratory researchers have developed a method to measure localized stiffness of thin paper materials with a single test. Althou ...

Principal Investigator : John M. Considine

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Preliminary state diagram of water in wood constructed from literature data on the glass transitions of wood polymers and calorimetric studies on water in wood Samuel Zelinka, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 979
New Model for Understanding the Fiber Saturation Point of Wood

The fiber saturation point is a key measure of how much water can be held within wood before free water forms in empty spaces within wood struct ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Solar cells fabricated on cellulose nanocrystal films open the door for truly recyclable solar cell technology. Thinkstock
ID: 447
New Process Fabricates Efficient Reclyclable Solar Cells Using Natural Substrates

Solar cells fabricated on optically transparent cellulose nanocrystal (CNC) films reach a power conversion efficiency of 2.7 percent, an unprece ...

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Moon

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of
ID: 3
New SPORL Process Efficiently Converts Biomass to Sugars and Ferment

Preliminary laboratory evaluation confirms the high performance of the SPORL process for pretreatment of Douglas fir

Principal Investigator : J.Y. Zhu

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of The details of how a wood veneer is cut dramatically effects surface quality. These pictures show bits of wood (white) torn off veneers that were cut at different temperatures. Anti Rohumaa, Aalto University.
ID: 950
New Test of Raw Material Quality Improves the Strength of Wood Laminates

Plywood and laminated veneer lumber are built from wood veneers. Because the test for surface quality of the veneer was not very useful, Forest ...

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Frihart

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of FPL's Centennial Research Facility, opened in June 2010, is a combined steel and wood structure with precast concrete panel exterior skin, composite wood fins, and an EPDM roof system. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 287
Nonresidential Building Construction in the United States,

The construction of low-rise nonresidential buildings is an important market for lumber, structural and nonstructural wood panels, and engineere ...

Principal Investigator : David B. Mckeever

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of
ID: 187
North America's pellet sector

The U.S. Forest Products Laboratory's nationwide mission to assess the wood sector's status and trends placed this research within its sphere. I ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of The Tucker Renewable Natural Gas unit is a new bioenergy technology that uses wood such as forest biomass as its fuel source. Richard Bergman, USDA Forest Service
ID: 577
Novel Technology Uses Waste Wood to Make Bioenergy while Sequestering Carbon

Wood companies need high-value uses for wood residues. A new technology developed by Forest Service researchers and their partners converts wood ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of A highly unusual yeast, Spathaspora passalidarum, is benefitting biofuels production. Tom Kuster, Forest Service
ID: 11
Novel Yeast Makes Bioconversion Faster and Less Expensive

Faster, cheaper biofuel production is possible for commercial use

Principal Investigator : Thomas W. Jeffries

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of D. Jean Lodge measuring the extent of mushroom mycelia on the forest floor three months after a simulated hurricane treatment in which limbs and leaves were trimmed from the canopy and deposited on the forest floor in the Luquillo Experimental Forest of Puerto Rico. Josh Brown, University of New Hampshire
ID: 909
Opening the Forest Canopy Slows Leaf Decomposition and Nutrient Cycling

Forest canopies are opened by thinning, logging operations, and storms. Results of a simulated hurricane experiment showed canopy opening had th ...

Principal Investigator : D. Jean Lodge

Water, Air, and Soil2015FPL
Photo of The 100% sustainable stage set for the 20th Century Fox show “Raising Hope.” John Zachary, 20th Century Fox
ID: 451
Panels Made from Wood and Recycled Fibers Go To Hollywood and Around the World

The Forest Service's Forest Products Laboratory is moving sustainable structural panel forming technology from the laboratory to commercial real ...

Principal Investigator : John F. Hunt

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of
ID: 164
Particleboard Panels Manufactured from Rice Straws of Different Geometries

Faced with worldwide shortages of forest resources, environmental pollution and waste of biological resources resulting from field burning of ri ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Bio-based boards have many applications and are produced from renewable sources including forest thinnings and recycled paper fibers. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 28
Partnership Produces 3D (3-Dimensional) Engineered Fiberboard Panels

Naturally bonded boards can use fibers produced from a variety of renewable sources including wood from forest thinnings and recycled paper fibe ...

Principal Investigator : John F. Hunt

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of Tsunami damaged building in the town of Dichato, Chile, 2010. Forest Service
ID: 179
Performance of Wood Structural Systems in Earthquake Zones

FPL scientists were actively involved in field assessments of low-rise structures, particularly wood structures, looking for seismic and tsunami ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Computer-based simulation tools allow designers to gauge the risk of moisture problems in building design. Tivoli Gough, USDA Forest Service
ID: 581
Possibilities and Pitfalls of Computer Simulation for Building Moisture Analysis

Moisture problems are much less expensive to correct in the building design phase than after the building is constructed. Computer-based simulat ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel V. Glass

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Sweetgum plantation at Oak Ridge National Laboratory Free-Air CO2 Enrichment study site. Jeffrey M. Warren, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
ID: 900
Potential Impacts of Climate Change on Tree Bark

Evidence shows changes in bark chemistry from an elevated carbon dioxide treatment applied to sweetgum trees.

Principal Investigator : Thomas L. Eberhardt

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Aqueous extract solutions under different pretreatments. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 306
Pretreating Wood Chips for Manufacturing Medium Density Fiberboard

FPL researchers studied how pretreating wood chips before manufacturing medium density fiberboard affected both the end product and the amount o ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Typical aspen slash wood (left) and flakes (right) sliced from the slash wood. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 307
Producing Value-Added Composite Panels from Aspen Slash Wood

The disposal of forest thinning residue is a concern when looking at sustainable forest management. Researchers found this material could be a ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Lignin-containing cellulose nano-crystals.
ID: 1284
Production of cellulose nanocrystals from raw wood via hydrothermal treatment

Hydrothermal treatment can be used for production of cellulose nanocrystals directly from green wood. Forest Service scientistsused Raman spectr ...

Principal Investigator : Umesh P. Agarwal

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of The structure model of the new glycoside hydrolase family 30-8 (GH30-8) xylanase (green) overlaid with the previously determined protein structure of a canonical GH30-8 xylanase (blue) indicating that although the new xylanase is functionally unique, it does not structurally differ from the canonical GH30-8 xylanases (top). An alignment showing the specific region of primary amino acid sequence containing the altered sequence (red boxes) attributed to the observed difference in mode of action of this new enzyme against its xylan substrate. USDA Forest Service
ID: 893
Protein Structure and Biochemical Characterization of a Novel Functioning Xylanase

Scientists identified and characterized a xylanase with unique function that may have applications in processing of woody biomass substrate.

Principal Investigator : Franz St. John

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of
ID: 157
Public Access to Actual Data Files for Cone Calorimeter Tests of Wood Products

The cone calorimeter test is a fire test used internationally for research and development of new fire retardants and to provide input data to m ...

Principal Investigator : Robert H. White

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Two copper-tolerant decay fungi, Fomitopsis palustris (left) and Wolfiporia cocos (right), exhibit delayed establishment on wood treated with copper plus targeted biocide (bottom wafer, 93) compared to wood treated with copper alone (top wafer, 44).
ID: 1286
Rational approach for discovering new, targeted biocides for wood protection

Forest Service researchers used a rational approach based on gene expression studies to identify a novel application of a fungicide for use in c ...

Principal Investigator : Juliet D. Tang

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of
ID: 171
Recalculating the Decay Hazard Index

Climate index values for estimating decay hazard to wood exposed outdoors above ground, commonly known as Scheffer index values, were calculated ...

Principal Investigator : Charlie G. Carll

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Life-cycle assessments help compares the environmental impacts of using wood decking versus non-traditional products. Tivoli Gough, USDA Forest Service
ID: 441
Redwood Decking is a Good Choice for the Environment

Building products produce emissions throughout their lifespan, from harvest and manufacturing to use and final disposal. Using building products ...

Principal Investigator : Richard Bergman, PhD

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Forest Service researchers are developing films for water decontamination using cellulose nanofibers. Thinkstock
ID: 450
Removing Organic Compounds from Water with Reusable Nanofiber Films

Researchers produced films for water decontamination using cellulose nanofibers as a matrix material for the suspension of photocatalytic nano p ...

Principal Investigator : Robert J. Moon

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Blown film extrusion of completely biobased poly(lactic acid) and cellulose nanocrystal polymer composites.  Sonal Karkhanis and Anna Kace Marra, Michigan State University.
ID: 1037
Renewable, Biodegradable Polylactic Acid-Cellulose Nanocrystal Composites for Packaging Applications

Packaging research conducted at the Forest Products Laboratory is aimed at developing fully biobased composites containing cellulose nanomateria ...

Principal Investigator : Ronald C. Sabo

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Fruit bodies of sequenced wood decay fungi Bjerkandera adusta (right image) and Ganoderma species (left image). Robert Blanchette, University of Minnesota
ID: 446
Research Demystifies Wood Decaying Fungi

Newly sequenced fungal genomes provide insight into the enzymatic conversion of wood into high value products.

Principal Investigator : Daniel Cullen

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Image 1: A picture of PbXynA1 (an xylanases enzyme) with the a xylooligosaccharide (sugar polymer) bound into the active site. Image 2: A close up revealing a large pocket not previously observed in other xylanases (enzymes) of this family. Franz St John, USDA Forest Service
ID: 452
Researchers Determine the Structure of Bacterial Protein Involved in Biomass Conversion

Researchers structurally characterized a bacterial protein involved in biomass degradation. The knowledge obtained from this novel protein sugge ...

Principal Investigator : Franz St. John

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Rice straw appears to be a promising agricultural residue for manufacturing composite panels. William M. Brown Jr., Bugwood.org
ID: 308
Rice Straw Particleboard

There has recently been a revival of interest in using agriculture residues to produce particleboards and other composite panels due to competit ...

Principal Investigator : Zhiyong Cai

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of
ID: 175
Scale-up of cellulose nano material production

There is considerable research internationally on cellulose nano-materials as reinforcement fibers for high strength composites. A persistent pr ...

Principal Investigator : Alan W. Rudie

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of FPL research looks to improve the safety of pulp bleaching at paper mills. Thinkstock
ID: 448
Scientists Determine Critical Factors that Caused Peroxide Explosion in Paper Mill

In 2001, a peroxide bleach stage at a paper mill in Evadale, Texas, exploded, rupturing two bleaching towers, destroying a pump, and propelling ...

Principal Investigator : Carl J. Houtman

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of A new, portable tree testing tool for determining the hazard potential of urban trees. R. Bruce Allison, Allison Tree Care, Inc.
ID: 1038
Scientists Develop New Tool to Detect Internal Decay in Trees

Through collaboration with an industrial partner, the Forest Service’s Forest Products Laboratory helped develop a handheld tool to assist tre ...

Principal Investigator : Christopher Adam Senalik

Inventory and Monitoring2016FPL
Photo of Fig. 1  General experimental flow diagram of p-TsOH fractionation of wood for producing fibers, cellulose nanofibrils (LCNF), lignin nanoparticles (LNP), sugar/biofuel, and furfural. JY Zhu, USDA Forest Service
Fig. 2 Application p-TsOH fractionation for producing lignin containing cellulose nanofibrils (LCNF) and lignin nanoparticles (LNP).
ID: 1287
Scientists discover rapid and near-complete dissolution of wood lignin by a recyclable acid hydrotrope

A low-temperature (below water boiling point) wood fractionation process has the potential for developing disrupting technologies for sustainabl ...

Principal Investigator : J.Y. Zhu

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of The brown rot fungus Fibroporia radiculosa is very tolerant to copper. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 24
Scientists Find the Achilles' Heel of Wood Fungi Tolerance to Preservatives

Inhibiting the enzymatic pathway in copper tolerant brown rot fungi can block its tolerance of commercial wood preservatives

Principal Investigator : Katie Ohno, M

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of Phase diagram describing the states of water in wood.
ID: 1282
Scientists study how water changes wood

Water causes a host of wood damage mechanisms such as mold, decay, fastener corrosion, and splitting. This research elucidates how water chan ...

Principal Investigator : Samuel L. Zelinka

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of Bridge No. 738 located in Yakima County, Washington, remains in satisfactory condition after 75 years of service. James Wacker, USDA Forest Service
ID: 434
Scientists Study True Longevity of Timber Highway Bridges

Do timber bridges last longer than concrete or steel bridges in similar climates� This national project aims to generate more reliable data ab ...

Principal Investigator : James P. Wacker

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Researchers are developing seismic performance factors for cross laminated timber buildings in the United States. U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 1046
Seismic Performance of Cross-Laminated Timber Buildings

Cross-laminated timber (CLT) buildings are becoming popular in earthquake regions of the United States, but structural engineers need new design ...

Principal Investigator : Douglas R. Rammer

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Short cellulose nanofibrils isolated from wood. DSimaging, LLC
ID: 587
Short Cellulose Nanofibrils Reinforce Aligned Polyvinyl Alcohol Fibers

Cellulose nanomaterials have recently gained much attention for their potential use for reinforcing polymers and for use in functional materials ...

Principal Investigator : Ronald C. Sabo

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Chemical modification can make cellulose nanocrystals compatible with polymer resins and thermoplastics. Greg Scheunaman, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 949
Site-Selective Surface Modification of Cellulose Nanocrystals

Forest Service researchers The hydrophilic surfaces of cellulose nanocrystals are synthetically converted to highly reactive functional groups.

Principal Investigator : Gregory Schueneman

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of The Catt Bridge is located in Buchanan County, Iowa, and is supported by GRS abutments and equipped with a smart bridge system.
ID: 1281
Smart timber bridge on geo-synthetic reinforced soil abutments

Forest Service researchers partnered in the construction and monitoring of an innovative bridge abutment system, developed to be lower cost and ...

Principal Investigator : James P. Wacker

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of Researchers are investigating the softening behavior of difficult-to-pelletize biomass and its effect on pelletizing. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 288
Softening of Biomass and Its Effect on Fuel Pellet Production

Biomass such as torrefied wood or wheat straw are of increasing interest as fuel but are difficult to pelletize. Researchers are investigating t ...

Principal Investigator : Craig M. Clemons

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of
ID: 190
Sol-gel technology to enhance performance properties of wood or wood fiber

With support from industry partners, FPL researchers are developing new sol-gel technologies to enhance performance properties of wood or wood f ...

Principal Investigator : Mandla A. Tshabalala

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of Snags and logs provide important resources and biological legacies in mixed-conifer forests. U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 1144
Southwestern Forests: The Importance of Snags and Logs

Snags (standing dead trees) and logs are a critical component of ecosystems. They contribute to decay dynamics and other ecological processes in ...

Principal Investigator : Joseph L. Ganey

Inventory and Monitoring
Resource Management and Use
Wildland Fire and Fuels
Wildlife and Fish
2016FPL
Photo of Wood products made with soy adhesives, except for the bottom product which was made with a casein adhesive. From top to bottom: decorative plywood, hardboard, medium density fiberboard, particleboard, oriented strandboard, engineered wood flooring, and glulam.
ID: 1269
Soy adhesives resolve two problems at once

Lower formaldehyde emission bonded wood products can be made using plant-based adhesives through an industry-government partnership.

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Frihart

Water, Air, and Soil
Resource Management and Use
2017FPL
Photo of Bonded wood panel products made with soy adhesives. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 309
Soy-based Adhesives for Wood Products

Soy-based adhesives developed at FPL have been commercialized and allow wood manufacturers to replace adhesives based on fossil fuel with biomas ...

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Frihart

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of
ID: 172
Soy-Based Adhesives Provide Wood Composites That Meet California Emission Standards

Ashland- Hercules, working cooperatively with the Forest Products Laboratory, have developed these soy adhesives and have commercialized them fo ...

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Frihart

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of The LeMay - America's Car Museum in Tacoma, Washington, exemplifies wood use in nonresidential building construction. APA, The Engineered Wood Association
ID: 432
Study Analyzes Construction Trends to Determine Wood's Potential

By analyzing construction trends from 2011, Forest Service researchers at the Forest Products Laboratory found that the opportunity exists for a ...

Principal Investigator : David B. Mckeever

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of The only difference between these plywood samples is the direction of cracks in the wood, which obviously affected the adhesive-performance (right image) test results. Anti Rohumaa, Aalto University
ID: 435
Success of Wood Veneers Influenced by Harvesting Season and Temperature: Plywood Performance and Failure: A New Understanding

Cooperation with Finnish researchers results in new understanding of relationships between veneer processing, veneer properties, and product fai ...

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Frihart

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Panels made of recycled fiber and based on FPL research are being commercialized. Steve Schmieding, Forest Service
ID: 322
Technology Transfer in Action

FPL-developed panels made from forest residuals, recycled fiber, and agricultural by-products are being commercialized by two start-up companies ...

Principal Investigator : John F. Hunt

Resource Management and Use2011FPL
Photo of Forest Service scientist D. Jean Lodge (left) and collaborator Urmas Koljalg from Estonia after collecting soil near a large tropical tree that forms beneficial root associations with mushroom and other basidiomycete fungi in the El Verde Research Area of the Luquillo Experimental Forest, Puerto Rico. Urmas Koljalg, Natural History Museum of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia
ID: 891
Temperate and Boreal Fungi Less Sensitive to Climate Change than Tropical Fungi

Beneficial fungi that help tree roots obtain nutrients from soil are less sensitive to climate in temperate and boreal forests than in tropical ...

Principal Investigator : D. Jean Lodge

Invasive Species2015FPL
Photo of Termites dusted with N'N-hydroxynapthalimide for release back into the colony. Forest Service
ID: 155
Termite Eradication: A search for the Holy Grail

Regarding Wisconsin termines, laboratory tests were initiated to evaluate transfer of a number of different dusting compounds to un-dusted colon ...

Principal Investigator : Frederick Green

Invasive Species2010FPL
Photo of The Xylotron uses machine-visioning technology to identify wood species. John Hermanson, USDA Forest Service
ID: 585
The Xylotron: A Field-Deployable Machine-Vision Wood Identification System

The Xylotron is a machine-vision-based wood identification system that uses a custom-designed wood imaging device (the Xyloscope), image analysi ...

Principal Investigator : Alex C. Wiedenhoeft

Resource Management and Use
Wildlife and Fish
Inventory and Monitoring
2014FPL
Photo of Forest Service researcher conducts an in-grade bending test on Southern pine. David Kretschmann, USDA Forest Service
ID: 440
Traditional Grading System Updated for Structural Lumber

The Forest Products Laboratory has traditionally provided unbiased information on the properties, characteristics, design, and use of structural ...

Principal Investigator : David E. Kretschmann

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of
ID: 1299
Understanding how the organization and interactions of the atoms that compose wood control its mechanical properties

To expand the uses and efficient utilization of wood, Forest Service researchers strive to learn how manipulate its molecular-scale structure t ...

Principal Investigator : Joseph Jakes

Resource Management and Use
Water, Air, and Soil
2017FPL
Photo of Simplified schematic representation of a cross-flow energy recovery ventilator core that allows transfer of heat and moisture to incoming supply air from exhaust air. This core helps maintain indoor conditions while bringing in fresh outdoor air. USDA Forest Service
ID: 897
Understanding Impacts of Ventilation on Moisture Levels in Homes

“Build tight, ventilate right” is good for reducing energy use in homes. Ventilation can also change the moisture levels in homes, affectin ...

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Boardman

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Illustration of moisture sources and sinks in a typical home. USDA Forest Service
ID: 898
Understanding Soil Gas Entry Into Homes

Your home sits on the ground, and hence is influenced by soil gas that can add both moisture and radon to your indoor air. A Forest Service sci ...

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Boardman

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Completed efficacy trial plots on the Chipola Experimental Forest. USDA Forest Service
ID: 889
USFS Termiticide Report for 2014

The most recent efficacy data for termiticides currently on the market were reported as part of the USDA Forest Service Termiticide Testing Prog ...

Principal Investigator : Thomas Guy Shelton

Invasive Species2015FPL
Photo of High-resolution laser scan image of a log with detected defect areas highlighted and acoustic waves passing through. U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 1039
Using New Technologies to Improve Log Defect Detection

Scientists from the Forest Service’s Forest Products Laboratory and Northern Research Station cooperated with West Virginia University to enha ...

Principal Investigator : Xiping Wang

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of New model of wood cellulose in never-dried and dried states. Umesh Agarwal,  USDA Forest Service.
ID: 913
Using Raman Spectroscopy to Analyze Wood, Cellulose-Nanomaterials, and Their Composites

Raman spectroscopy provides information based on molecular vibrations and is well-suited to analyze wood and cellulose-nanomaterials. Using a r ...

Principal Investigator : Umesh P. Agarwal

Resource Management and Use2015FPL
Photo of Researchers are studying soy-based adhesives for wood products. Steve Schmeiding, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.
ID: 964
Using Soybeans to Replace Synthetic Adhesives for Wood Bonding

Soybeans were used to glue the first plywood but were replaced by fossil-fuel-based adhesives after World War II. Scientists at the Forest Servi ...

Principal Investigator : Charles R. Frihart

Resource Management and Use2016FPL
Photo of Researchers are studying the freezing and melting of water in solid wood to learn about wood decay and faster corrosion processes. Tatiana Morozova, shutterstock.com
ID: 15
Water Freezing in Wood: How Low Can It Go

The freezing and melting of water in wood gives clues about how water bonds to wood during processes such as wood decay and fastener corrosion

Principal Investigator : Samuel L. Zelinka

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of The edible black poplar mushroom, Agrocybe aegerita. Forest Service
ID: 176
Water, Air, and Soil

Forest fungi perform an essential role in recycling woody plant debris and have many potential applications in biotechnology. In 2009, a Forest ...

Principal Investigator : Kenneth E. Hammel

Water, Air, and Soil2010FPL
Photo of The Fairbanks House demonstrates design and construction details that have allowed this wood structure to stand for  three centuries. Jeffery Howe, Boston College
ID: 2
Wood Can Last for Centuries if Protected From Moisture

Report dispels myths about wood construction through proper information that educates and empowers the public

Principal Investigator : Carol A. Clausen

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of Installation of a cross-laminated timber panel for Promega building in Fitchburg, Wisconsin. Steve Schmieding, USDA Forest Service
ID: 439
Wood Construction Goes Beyond Its Traditional Roots

As interest in sustainable building options continues to grow. Wood construction is going beyond its traditional roots in housing and expanding ...

Principal Investigator : David E. Kretschmann

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of
ID: 177
Wood decay enters new era of genomics research

Over the past decade, research collaborations between the Department of Energy's Joint Genome Institute (JGI) and the Forest Products Laboratory ...

Principal Investigator : Forest Products Laboratory

Resource Management and Use2010FPL
Photo of DAME crystals on a smoldering mesquite tree in Alamo Canyon, ArizLaurence A. J. Garvie, Arizona State University
ID: 890
Wood Decay Fungus Forms Toxic Organohalogen Crystals in Mesquite

A Forest Service scientist identified toxic organohalogen crystals formed by fungi in decaying mesquite. Charcoal production and forest fires i ...

Principal Investigator : Jessie A. Glaeser

Water, Air, and Soil
Wildland Fire and Fuels
Invasive Species
Resource Management and Use
2015FPL
Photo of This research will improve the durability of wood-plastic composite deckboards such as the one shown here being evaluated for color. Nicole Stark, USDA Forest Service
ID: 584
Wood Flour Extraction Improves Moisture Performance of Wood-Plastic Composites

Improving the moisture performance of wood-plastic composites provides a potential avenue toward improving the product's overall durability. For ...

Principal Investigator : Nicole M. Stark

Resource Management and Use2014FPL
Photo of Fire retardant treatments can reduce the contribution of wood-plastic composites to a fire. Craig Clemons, Forest Service
ID: 6
Wood-Plastic Composites Are More Desirable With Fire Retardant Treatments

Wood-plastic composites treated with fire retardants addresses fire concerns in the wildland-urban interface

Principal Investigator : Robert H. White

Resource Management and Use2012FPL
Photo of Beetle-killed lodgepole pine fiber treated with potassium methyl siliconate. Cheng Piao, Louisiana State University
ID: 453
Wood-Plastic Composites Improved with Fiber Pre-Treatment

Scientists determine the dimensional stability of wood-plastic composites can be improved by treating wood sawdust and particles derived from be ...

Principal Investigator : Nicole M. Stark

Resource Management and Use2013FPL
Photo of Hollow glass microspheres in wood-plastic composites.  Rebecca Wallace, Forest Service
ID: 12
Wood-Plastic Composites Improved with Glass

Adding microsized glass particles to wood-plastic composites creates a less dense but stiffer material for use in a variety of building applicat ...

Principal Investigator : Craig M. Clemons

Resource Management and Use2012FPL