Friday, September 29, 2000
Las Vegas--Thermoplastic composites may soon give Mother
Nature a helping hand in improving the strength of wood products.
At the Composites 2000 show, Dow Chemical Co. (Midland, MI) and
Pacific Woodtech Corp. (Burlington, WA) announced their intent to enhance
laminated veneer lumber (LVH) with reinforcements made from pultruded
thermoplastic composites. The resulting products will initially target
industrial applications--such as scaffold planks.
The reinforcing pultrusions will be produced using Dow's FULCRUM
technology, which employs a thermoplastic polyurethane as the resin matrix for
continuous glass fiber. These composites have "all the key mechanical attributes
for a structural reinforcement material," says Faye Miller, Dow's business
development manager for lumber. Typical mechanical properties--for a 2- x 20-mm
strip--include a tensile strength of 1,000 MPa, a tensile elongation of 2.2%,
and a transverse flexural strength of 120 MPa. FULCRUM offers these strength
benefits at a density of just 1.91 grams/cubic cm.
For more information on Fulcrum, see