Theses and Dissertations


Ming Liu

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Wan, Hui

Committee Member

Borazjani, Abdolhamid

Committee Member

Zhang, Jilei

Committee Member

Shmulsky, Rubin

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Sustainable Bioproducts

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Forest Resources


Department of Sustainable Bioproducts


Urea formaldehyde (UF) resins are widely used as adhesives for wood-based composites. These thermosetting polymers have advantages of relative low price, fast curing speed, and relative good bonding performance. However, UF resin bonded composites are designed for interior applications due to its weak water resistance. Moreover, traditional prevalent ways for recycling wood-based composites face problems caused by UF resins. In this project, the reuse of cured UF resins was systematically studied. The verification and characterization of crystalline structures in cured UF resins were conducted. The results showed that the crystalline regions were accounted for nearly 14.48% in a typical 1.2 formaldehyde to urea (F/U) molar ratio UF resin. The details of the resin crystalline regions, such as grain sizes and interplanar spacing (d-spacing), were characterized. The crystalline structures, nevertheless, did not affect the UF resin hydrothermal hydrolysis in this study. The reuse of cured UF resin was started with a hydrothermal hydrolysis. Under 140 °C and 2 h of hydrothermal process, 20 mL of 30 w.t. % formaldehyde water solution was able to depolymerize up to 1.7 g of cured UF resin. The hydrolyzed formaldehyde solutions were directly used as normal formaldehyde solutions for UF resin synthesis. The synthesized resin (named as UUF resin) contained about 6 w.t. % of cured UF resin and presented similar chemical structures and bonding performance as normal UF resins. Hybrid resins made of UUF resin and polymeric 4-4 diphenyl methane diisocyanate (pMDI) were prepared. The pMDI was found evenly dispersed in the hybrid resins by using acetone as its solvent. These hybrid resins resulted in faster curing and stronger bonding performance than pure UUF resins. Furthermore, the hybrid resin was used in a new bonding design, which used southern pine wood radial section features. This design generated finger joint like bonding interfaces by hot pressing two resin coated wood radial sections. The bonding strength and bond line stability were enhanced by this design.



urea formaldehyde resin||hydrolysis||recycling||hybrid resin||bond line