12 Feb '18, 7pm

Wood as strong as steel? Just remove the lignin, squish, bake, and serve!

Wood as strong as steel? Just remove the lignin, squish, bake, and serve!

Wood is surely one of the most versatile materials available. It can be found in a huge variety of colours and physical properties depending on the variety of the tree that grew it, and it has been fashioned into all conceivable devices, products, and structures over millenia. It’s not without shortcomings though, and one of the most obvious is that it can’t match the strength of some other materials. To carry large forces with a piece of wood that piece has to be made much larger than a corresponding piece of steel, something which is not a problem in a roof truss, but significantly difficult in a car body. There have been a variety of attempts to strengthen the structure of wood in the past, and the latest has recently been published as a Nature paper . In it is described a process of first treating natural wood in a chemical bath to remove lignin and leave only the cell...

Full article: https://hackaday.com/2018/02/12/need-strength-its-modifie...

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