Processing and Utilisation | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Processing and Utilisation

The highly experienced team in the Forest industries Research Centre (FIRC) undertake research in the broad area of processing and utilisation. Modern wood processing and fibre utilisation Research and Development facilities at the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Salisbury Research Facility, provide FIRC with access to leading edge research capacity. Large variation in wood properties available from hardwood and softwood plantations and from native forest resources requires innovative composite and engineered product solutions to maximize both product quality and value. Industry conversion options require new solutions that move on from traditional solid wood sawing technologies.

High fibre recovery from small logs utilising spindleless veneering technology, combined with latest generation adhesives and seasoning Research and Development opens up new horizons for engineered wood products such as cross laminated timber panels and massive timber construction solutions for multi-storey timber buildings. Advanced timber testing equipment in a National Association of Testing Authorities, Australia, accredited engineering laboratory at Salisbury and an emphasis on timber engineering at the University of the Sunshine Coast ideally positions the Queensland Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and FIRC to address the need to incorporate local forest resources into these new product options that have been emerged from Europe and North America.

Forest growers and processors require new generation product options to maximize their returns by improving fibre utilization and value-adding while increasing market share for wood in the domestic and light industrial construction sectors. Traditional high value markets for architect designed feature use of wood in all construction, as well as furniture and cabinet making, requires ongoing Research and Development to support the utilisation of wood as a valued and modern material.

FIRC provides a platform to link Research and Development in processing and utilisation to other stages in the value chain and consider in-field or pre-processing options that may provide savings and optimisation of resources and value.

IEA Bioenergy Task 43

Lead Researcher: Prof Mark Brown

Funding agency: Funded by member country contributions

Amount awarded: N/A

Project overview:

USC is the Operating Agent for IEA Bioenergy Task 43, with Professor Mark Brown the Task Leader.
The Task explores technical and economic strategies to increase the quantity of biomass available, improve the quality of biomass delivered for different energy purposes, and explore strategies to increase the value and foster confidence in biomass supply for both direct and cascade use of biomass for energy.

Biomass slash piles