The specialized area “wood species and wood anatomy” focuses on microscopic investigations of the structure of wood and wood-based materials, on the identification of wood species as well as on physical and mechanical properties of wood.
In the course of the development of new wood-based composites, investigations into the structure of densified solid wood were undertaken. Deformations of the wood structure brought about by the densification were visualized and conclusions on the technical properties of the resulting wood-based material could be drawn.
Microscopic investigations of glue-lines enable conclusions to be drawn on the penetration of adhesives into wood, the formation of glue-lines for different adhesives, glue-spreads and surface qualities of the wood substrates. Microscopic investigations into the crack initiation and propagation in finger jointed wood loaded in tension are performed.
Physical and mechanical characteristics (tensile, compressive, flexural and shear strength, modulus of elasticity, density, differential swelling and shrinkage etc.) can be determined for wood species which are of special interest but for which insufficient published data exists.
Microscopic and macroscopic characteristics of wood facilitate the identification of wood species. To this end, thin sections are prepared from splinters or larger pieces of the wood to be identified. The thin sections are aligned with the main anatomical directions of the wood. Technical literature and the collection of samples of numerous wood species maintained by Holzforschung Austria are used during the identification.