Lignin Can Make Building Materials Less Toxic
(Michigan State University/Ethanol Producer Magazine) A collaborative study by Mojgan Nejad, MSU forestry, proves that lignin, a byproduct of paper and bioethanol production, can completely replace phenol in phenolic adhesive formulation. This research directly impacts housing manufacturing by introducing biobased adhesives made of lignin, a renewable resource, instead of petroleum-based phenol.
Nejad’s research is the first instance showing the 100 percent successful substitution of phenol with lignin. For the last 30 years, researchers have been attempting to fully replace phenol in phenol-based glues. However, only partial replacement, up to 50 percent, was possible. The research team was successful in testing plywood samples made of developed resin. When compared to commercial petroleum-based adhesives, the plywood made of lignin-based adhesives exhibited similar shear strength under both wet and dry conditions.
“Our work has opened up an opportunity for the waste generated through bioethanol processes to create adhesives for engineered wood products,” Nejad said. “This will help the housing market to be less dependent on petroleum-based raw materials.” READ MORE Abstract (Journal of Applied Polymer Science)