Pre-pressing and Pre-heating via Hot-Air/Hot-Steam Process for the Production of Binderless Medium-Density Fiberboards

Markus Euring, Alexander Kirsch, Alireza Kharazipour


The hot-air/hot-steam process was used for the first time as a combined pre-pressing and pre-heating system for the production of medium-density fiberboards (MDF) at the pilot scale. Pre-heating systems are designed to pre-heat fiber mats before pressing by hot-presses. Using such techniques, pressing times are reduced significantly and the board properties are influenced positively; both are essential for effective MDF production. In recent years, industry has searched for alternatives to petrochemical binders. Primarily, MDF are bonded by urea-formaldehyde (UF) resins in Europe. To replace UF resins, a laccase-mediator-system (LMS) was used to activate the wood fibers’ self-cohesion. It was found that the internal bond strength (IB) and thickness swelling (TS) were noticeably improved by applying the hot-air/hot-steam process before final hot-pressing for both LMS and 10% UF binding systems. Simultaneously, the total pressing time could be reduced by 25% when combining the hot-air/hot-steam process with hot-pressing.


Hot-air/hot-steam process; hot-press; pressing time; laccase-mediator-system; MDF

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