The moisture behaviour of thermally modified Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) exposed to cyclic conditions was analysed. Specimens of dimensions 15 x 15 x 5 mm(3) were thermally modified at 180 A degrees C (TM1) and 220 A degrees C (TM2) using atmospheric pressure and superheated steam. Radial, tangential, volumetric swelling and anti-swelling efficiency (ASE) were calculated during six consecutive drying-soaking cycles. Afterwards, additional specimens were exposed to ten relative humidity cycles (0 and 95 %) at temperature 25 and 40 A degrees C in order to analyse its influence on sorption behaviour. Application of thermal modification led to significant reduction of swelling from original 18.4-13.3 % for TM1 and to 10.5 % for TM2. However, after exposure to six consecutive soaking-drying cycles, the swelling of control specimens slightly decreased, whereas the swelling of thermally modified specimens increased. Due to the increased swelling after repeated cycles, the original ASE (28.6 and 42.7 %) decreased to 22.5 % for TM1 and to 36.88 % for TM2. The presence of leachable compounds and release of internal stresses are mainly attributed to that phenomenon. The EMC of the reference specimens decreases over the repeated humidity cycles for approximately 1 %-units. Same trend was found for the mild thermal modification TM1, but decreasing only in the range of 0.5 %-units. However, the EMC of the TM2 specimens during humidity cycles behaved differently. The results provide a better insight into details of thermal modification of wood and its behaviour under cyclic conditions.
- HEAT-TREATED WOOD
- NORWAY SPRUCE