Wood Cell-Wall Crystallinity and Tritiated Water Autoradiography<sup>1</sup>


  • Marc H. Schneider
  • Pei-Ching Chang


Light microscope autoradiography gave further insight into the influence of polar solvents on wood crystal structure. Wood with and without moisture cure polyurethane coating was exposed to tritiated water vapor, and then subjected to various treatments designed to remove tritium from the wood substance. The strong retention of tritium by the wood, and its partial removal only after cyclic drying and wetting, indicated that this tritium was located on hydroxyl groups within cellulose crystalline regions. It also indicated that transformation of paracrystalline regions into crystalline regions and the reverse does occur during wetting and drying cycles.


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