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Energy Efficient Wood Processing and Machining

The future of Finnish forest industry depends largely on the energy efficiency of wood processing. The ultimate target of this project is to facilitate changes in the mechanical wood defibrating and machining industries by radically decreasing their use of energy. The main approach is to understand how mechanical energy is absorbed by the wood material on the molecular, supra-molecular and cellular levels. This understanding will be obtained through detailed modelling of the mechanical behaviour of wood at the micro- and macro-scales under various modes of loading and varying conditions. The wood material model will be built upon realistic characteristics of the wood tissue, cells and cell walls at the nano- and higher scales. The lacking information on the detailed structure and properties of the cell wall layers will be gathered through transmission electron microscopy combined with elemental analysis and atomic force microscopy in combination with Raman microscopy. Fracture of single cell wall layers will be studied in a purpose-built loading device in the chamber of an environmental scanning electron microscope.