Environmentally Friendly Impregnation of Wood

This project has the purpose of finding a new modification method with silicates that would be able to replace the traditional pressure impregnation of wood. This innovative project is a collaboration with Frøslev, called Preservation Technologies.

Preservation Technologies are proud to share that this solution is patented. 

The project is supported by the Program for Green Technology – Ecological Building.

The purpose of impregnating wood is to increase the wood’s resistance to humidity. With traditional pressure impregnation, chemicals, often copper, chrome, and arsenic, are pressed into the wood. In Denmark, it is no longer legal to use chrome, arsenic, and a number of other heavy metals to impregnate wood. However, it is still legal to impregnate wood with copper, but it is not possible to separate it from wood impregnated with copper-chrome and can, therefore, not be burned after it has been discarded. 

The heartwood is naturally better protected against humidity than the rest of the wood and it is, furthermore, not possible to reach that far into the wood. Many impregnation products do only cover the shell of the tree and is far from reaching the core of the wood. The impregnation method with modified silicates is able to reach all the way into the heartwood. It cannot enter the core, but it reaches as far as other traditional impregnation methods on the market. 

The photo on the left shows a small wooden block on 5cm in an MR-scanner.

To test the works of the modifying process compared to other traditional products, Preservation Technologies has testing sites in France, Austria, Florida, and Malaysia. It is not the humidity that breaks down wood, but fungi that thrives in places with high humidity and warm temperatures. Denmark is only an ideal place for fungi 4-5 months of the year. To test the wood’s durability in Denmark will, therefore, take up to 12 years and require a good amount of patience. 

The photo on the left shows a small wooden block on 5cm in an MR-scanner.

The photo on the left shows a small wooden block on 5cm in an MR-scanner.

Wood impregnated with modified silicates after 1 year in Malaysia.

Untreated wood after 1 year in Malaysia.

The environment in Malaysia, on the contrary, has a fungi pressure 3-5 times as high as in Denmark and can, therefore, give a sooner insight in the works of the modified wood, also in comparison to wood treated with traditional products as well as untreated. The photos above show on the left shows wood impregnated with liquid silicates after 1 year in Malaysia. On the right is a photo of untreated wood that has been at the same location at the same time. The wood on the left is basically free of fungi, whereas the untreated wood on the right is in a state of decay.

Bent Larsen
Technical Manager
For More Information:

If you want to know more about the modified silicates wood impregnation project, you are welcome to contact our Technical Manager