Influence of Hemicellulose Extraction on Water Uptake Behavior of Wood Strands
Keywords:Water uptake, wettability, hemicelluloses, hot-water extraction, enzyme treatment
AbstractHemicellulose is the most hydrophilic and unstable of wood polymers. This study examined the effect of decreasing the amount of hemicellulose in wood on wettability and water uptake behavior of wood strands. Two methods were used for decreasing hemicellulose in wood strands: hot-water extraction and enzyme treatment. Contact angle measurements showed a decrease in wettability of wood strands after hot-water extraction of hemicellulose. These results indicated a decrease in hydrophilic character of wood strands. Amount of water taken up by strands treated with hot-water extraction decreased as percentage of mass loss increased. The enzyme-pretreated wood strands also absorbed water at lower rates compared with untreated samples. Results indicated that hemicellulose has a great influence on water absorption of wood and that decreasing hygroscopocity of wood by extraction of hemicelluloses is possible.
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