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The average carbon oxidation state of thermally modified wood as a marker for its decay resistance against Basidiomycetes

Abstract : It has recently been reported that the oxygen to carbon-ratio (O/C) of thermally modified wood is a reliable indicator for the resistance against attack by Basidiomycete fungi. The present theoretical study is an attempt to clarify causality between the O/C-ratio of thermally modified wood and its fungal resistance, as measured by standardized laboratory test procedures. It is shown that different wood species, with varying degree of thermal modification, reveal a remarkable correlation in elemental composition when plotted in a van Krevelen state diagram, suggesting a common modification chemistry shared by these species. The overall chemical reaction types responsible for the composition changes appear to be mainly dehydration, with some decarboxylation. The latter reaction decreases the mean overall oxidation state of carbon atoms present in thermally modified wood, leading to an inherently improved resistance against oxidation of the material. A known general correlation, between the average oxidation state of organic matter and the Gibbs free energy of the oxidation half-reaction, was found quantitatively consistent with the observed trend in the fungal resistance of thermally modified wood with the O/C-ratio.
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https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-01593788
Contributor : Lermab Ul <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, September 26, 2017 - 4:46:08 PM
Last modification on : Monday, December 14, 2020 - 3:46:14 PM

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Wim Willems, Philippe Gérardin, Holger Militz. The average carbon oxidation state of thermally modified wood as a marker for its decay resistance against Basidiomycetes. Polymer Degradation and Stability, Elsevier, 2013, 98 (11), pp.2140-2145. ⟨10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2013.09.003⟩. ⟨hal-01593788⟩

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