Chemical composition of processed bamboo for structural applications.

03 Jul 2018

Natural materials are a focus for development of low carbon products for a variety of applications. To utilise these materials, processing is required to meet acceptable industry standards. Laminated bamboo is a commercial product that is currently being explored for structural applications, however there is a gap in knowledge about the effects of commercial processing on the chemical composition. The present study utilised interdisciplinary methods of analysis to investigate the effects of processing on the composition of bamboo. Two common commercial processing methods were investigated: bleaching (chemical treatment) and caramelisation (hygrothermal treatment). The study indicated that the bleaching process results in a more pronounced degradation of the lignin in comparison to the caramelised bamboo. This augments previous research, which has shown that the processing method (strip size) and treatment may affect the mechanical properties of the material in the form of overall strength, failure modes and crack propagation. The study provides additional understanding of the effects of processing on the properties of bamboo.