Much has happened since the first publication on the transparent wood; a bio composite that combines transparent properties with the strength of wood. Since 2016 the material has been given special properties such as thermo-regulation and other intelligent properties. Now a new milestone has been reached: fully bio-based transparent wood, made with green chemistry.
– We have replaced the fossil-based polymers we previously used. It has been one of the difficulties we have had, to get sustainable transparent wood, says professor Lars Berglund, WWSC / KTH.
The previously used fossil-based polymer has in the new generation of transparent wood been replaced by a clear bio-plastic made from citrus fruit, limone acrylate.
– The new limonene acrylate it is made from renewable citrus, such as peel waste that can be recycled from the orange juice industry, says lead author, PhD student Céline Montanari.
Besides being bio-based, the material has now improved translucent properties while still having excellent mechanical properties, making sustainable structural building elements a potential future application.
The results were recently published in Advanced Science.
– The research we do on these materials paves the way for new wood nanotechnology, says Lars Barglund to kth.se.
High performance, fully bio-based, and optically transparent wood biocomposites, Advanced Science, doi.org/10.1002/advs.202100559