Development Of Grading Rules For Re-Cycled Timber Used In Structural Applications

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Conference Proceeding
Proceedings of WCTE2008-10th World Conference on Timber Engineering, 2008, pp. 1 - 8
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Until recently, the usual method of disposal of timber used in structures has been demolition and disposal. For example, at the time of writing, Australians are placing approximately 1 million tonnes of wood waste into landfill sites. However, reduced availability of native hardwoods has created a situation where use of recycled timber has significant environmental and economic potential, particularly where recycled products can be incorporated into new construction or in some cases retro-fitting of existing buildings and structures. Currently, there are no standards or recommendations for assigning design properties for structural reuse of wood and the use of recycled timber in decorative products tends to rely on subjective application of visual grading rules developed for new timber. In order to address this problem and utilise the recycled timber resource effectively and reliably, the authors have undertaken a research project (funded by the Forest and Wood Products Association). The aim of this project is to develop appropriate (visual) grading systems that take into account the properties of recycled timber; in particular, how the history and previous use of the timber has effected its properties in terms of being fit for purpose in a re-use application. The paper will present the findings of this project involving research to quantify the mechanical properties and develop appropriate (visual) grading systems that take into account the properties of recycled timber; for use in both structural and aesthetic applications.
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