Hydrothermal recycling of waste and performance of the recycled wooden particleboards.Waste Manag. 2008; 28(1):57-63.WM
Recycling today constitutes the most environmentally friendly method of managing wood waste. A large proportion of the wood waste generated consists of used furniture and other constructed wooden items, which are composed mainly of particleboard, a material which can potentially be reused. In the current research, four different hydrothermal treatments were applied in order to recover wood particles from laboratory particleboards and use them in the production of new (recycled) ones. Quality was evaluated by determining the main properties of the original (control) and the recycled boards. Furthermore, the impact of a second recycling process on the properties of recycled particleboards was studied. With the exception of the modulus of elasticity in static bending, all of the mechanical properties of the recycled boards tested decreased in comparison with the control boards. Furthermore, the recycling process had an adverse effect on their hygroscopic properties and a beneficial effect on the formaldehyde content of the recycled boards. The results indicated that when the 1st and 2nd particleboard recycling processes were compared, it was the 2nd recycling process that caused the strongest deterioration in the quality of the recycled boards. Further research is needed in order to explain the causes of the recycled board quality falloff and also to determine the factors in the recycling process that influence the quality degradation of the recycled boards.