Changes in the content and composition of the extractives in thermally modified tropical hardwoods
Chemical composition of wood is known to change during thermal treatments. Two species grown in Turkey, afrormosia (Pericopsis elata) and duka (Tapirira guianensis) were heat treated according to Thermowood® method. Lignin, cellulose, hemicelluloses and extractives in dichloromethane, ethanol and water were determined. Wood extracts were analysed by gas chromatography with mass detection and existing compounds were identified by NIST17 database. Results show that hemicelluloses and cellulose content decreased for both heat-treated woods along the treatment while lignin percentage increased. The analysis of extractives has shown several compounds normally associated to lignin thermal degradation that increased along the treatment. At the same time several compounds associated to carbohydrate thermal degradation were found in all the extracts for both heat-treated woods. These founding have allowed the understanding of the degradation pattern of wood during thermal modification. There was not much difference between afrormosia and duka woods structural compounds behaviour along thermal modification. However, the variation of the amount of extractives along the treatment depended on the species.