Martin Link, Christian Kolbitsch, Gianluca Tondi, Michael Ebner, Stefanie Wieland, Alexander Petutschnigg


100% natural tannin-based rigid foams were synthesized. Tannin-furfuryl alcohol networks were polymerized in an acid environment applying a temperature between 120° and 160°C. The process was developed in two ways: in a ventilated oven and in between the heated plates of a press. The foams produced showed a high homogeneity in both cases. By modifying the formulation in terms of type and amount of components it was possible to produce two kinds of foams: (1) light with density of approximately 50 Kg/m³, and (2) resistant having a density of approximately 180 Kg/m³. The compression resistance and the water absorption of these materials were evaluated. The results of these tests, in comparison with those of formaldehyde-reinforced tannin foams, indicated that these lightweight foams have lower mechanical strength but higher water affinity. The latter was also demonstrated with moisture uptake measurements. Particular attention was dedicated to the press-produced foams for their possible application as core-layer for lightweight composite panels.


Tannin; Rigid foams; Lightweight; Board; Press; Natural

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