Characterization and Application of Urea-Formaldehyde-Furfural Co-condensed Resins as Wood Adhesives

Jizhi Zhang, Hui Chen, Antonio Pizzi, Yonghua Li, Qiang Gao, Jianzhang Li


Furfural, as an organic compound derived from biomass materials, was used to partially substitute for formaldehyde in the synthesis of UF resin. Urea-formaldehyde-furfural co-condensed (UFFR) resins with different substitute ratios of furfural to formaldehyde (FR/F) were prepared. The effects of the FR/F substitute ratio on the performances of UFFR resins were investigated. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) were applied to characterize the chemical structures of UFFR resins. Plywood bonded by these resins was manufactured, and its bond strength and formaldehyde emission were measured. The results showed that the substitution of furfural in place of formaldehyde could reduce the free formaldehyde content effectively at the expense of prolongation of the curing time. The spectra of MALDI-TOF and FTIR confirmed the co-condensation of urea-formaldehyde-furfural both in uncured and cured resins. Plywood prepared under optimized parameters could yield high bond strength and low formaldehyde emission, which were 0.84 MPa and 0.23 ppm, respectively. The optimized parameters were as follows: a FR/F substitute ratio of 1/3; 1% (NH4)2S2O8 as the curing agent; and a hot pressing temperature of 130 °C. Hence, it is feasible to substitute partially formaldehyde by furfural to prepare UFFR resins as wood adhesives for plywood.


Furfural; Urea-formaldehyde resin; Co-condensation; Wood adhesives; Plywood

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