Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Darrel Nicholas

Committee Member

El Barbary Hassan

Committee Member

Jason Street

Committee Member

Rubin Shmulsky

Date of Degree


Original embargo terms

Complete embargo for 6 months

Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Forest resources with emphasis in Sustainable Bioproducts

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Forest Resources


Department of Sustainable Bioproducts


Lack of dimensional stability and susceptibility to the action of xylophagous organisms make wood a challenging material to work with. E-Caprolactam is a water-soluble cyclic amide chemical with low mammalian toxicity, that can be used as a bulking agent to improve the dimensional stability of wood and offers protection against subterranean termites and several wood degradant fungi. E-Caprolactam delivers a similar level of dimensional stability as that provided by PEG-1000, a chemical extensively studied in the past decades and a standard dimensional stabilizer agent for wood. Regarding wood protection, E-Caprolactam exhibits efficacy against wood decay fungi and termites at very low levels compared to PEG-1000. If water leaching can be inhibited for this product, e-Caprolactam can be considered as a strong candidate for the wood decking industry. In addition to the evaluation of E-Caprolactam for wood dimensional stabilization and preservation this dissertation covers the development of an apparatus developed to automate wood sorption and desorption studies, and their influence in the wood dimensional behavior. Product design techniques and prototyping studies were conducted, and calibration procedures were made. This apparatus is still in development, but it shows potential for increasing the accuracy of shrinking and swelling measurements and efficiency for dimensional stabilization studies.


McIntire Stennis (Nicholas-State) - Fund: 170000 - Org: 080500 - Program: 027000 - Activity-Code: 065980 MSU FWRC (Research Activity) - Fund: 270117 - Org: 080500 - Program: 027000 - Activity-Code: 900100