An Application of Finite Element Analysis to Wood Drying

Young Q. Gui, E. William Jones, Fred W. Taylor, Camille A. Issa


Because of the nonhomogeneous and nonlinear properties of wood, exact solutions for heat and mass transfer are difficult to obtain by current methods of analysis. This work presents a numerical solution for the analysis of drying wood using the finite element method. A nonlinear model was established on a two-dimensional finite element grid structure that considers local density variation. Through the finite element method of analysis of unsteady-state heat and moisture transfer in wood, the dynamic profiles of temperature and moisture content were determined at a series of drying times. The resulting numerical solutions match well with experimental results and with published results. The results will help to extend understanding of wood-water and temperature relations. In future studies, these data can be incorporated into drying stress analysis to analyze checking or warping.


Mass transfer;heat transfer;moisture content;temperature;spruce;southern pine;<i>Pinus</i> spp.;wood drying;numerical analysis;finite element method

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