Development of Binderless Fiberboards from Steam-exploded and Oxidized Oil Palm Wastes

Elizabeth Mejía Henao, Germán C. Quintana, Babatunde O. Ogunsile


Binderless fiberboards were made from oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) empty fruit bunches with two treatments: steam explosion and Fenton reagent oxidation. Fiberboards were prepared with a targeted density of 1.20 g/cm3 and a thickness of 4 mm. A factorial experimental design 22 with two center repetitions and one repetition was applied for each treatment. The oil palm waste was oxidized with Fenton reagent using a H2O2/Fe2+ ratio of 2%/0.2% to 4%/0.4% and a pressing temperature of 170 to 190 °C. Steam explosion was carried out at a severity factor of 3.5 to 4.0 at the same pressing temperature. Both treatments were examined under two major response variables: mechanical properties (modulus of rupture, MOR, and modulus of elasticity, MOE) and physical properties (thickness swelling, TS, and water absorption, WA). Steam-exploded samples developed better physico-mechanical properties than those that underwent Fenton reagent oxidation. The best results were obtained from fiberboards treated with the highest steam explosion design conditions (severity 4 and pressing temperature 190 °C) to give optimum values of MOE 3100.09 MPa, MOR 28.49 MPa, TS 11.80%, and WA 22.74%. Binderless fiberboards made from steam explosion-treated pulp satisfied favorably well the Colombian Standard NTC 2261.


Binderless fiberboard; Oil palm wastes; Steam explosion; Fenton reagent

Full Text:


Welcome to BioResources! This online, peer-reviewed journal is devoted to the science and engineering of biomaterials and chemicals from lignocellulosic sources for new end uses and new capabilities. The editors of BioResources would be very happy to assist you during the process of submitting or reviewing articles. Please note that logging in is required in order to submit or review articles. Martin A. Hubbe, (919) 513-3022,; Lucian A. Lucia, (919) 515-7707, URLs:; ISSN: 1930-2126