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Official Journal of the Japan Wood Research Society

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Transverse swelling behavior of hinoki (Chamaecyparis obtusa) revealed by the replica method

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Abstract

Transverse swelling and its anisotropy in hinoki (Chamaecyparis obtusa) in several kinds of organic liquids and in water were investigated by means the replica method. There was more cross-sectional swelling of cell walls and cell wall thickness in earlywood than in latewood. Marked swelling toward cell lumens was observed in wood swollen in liquids that had higher swelling potentials than water. This suggests that the swelling of cell walls in these liquids is much greater than the external swelling. Feret's diameters of the cell lumens were reduced by swelling in all the observed cases except in the tangential direction of earlywood, suggesting that cell walls swell to a much less extent in width than in thickness. Deformation of cell shapes caused by the tensile force from the latewood were observed in the earlywood and in the transitional region from earlywood to latewood. When swollen in water, transverse swelling anisotropy caused only by the swelling in cell wall thickness were calculated to be 1.2 for the whole region over an annual ring and 1.4 for the earlywood. These values could not account for the external swelling anisotropy of 2.1. Considering obvious deformations of cell shapes in the earlywood and in the transitional region, we conclude that the interaction between earlywood and latewood is one of the prime factors contributing to the transverse swelling anisotropy of coniferous wood.

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Correspondence to Yutaka Ishimaru.

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Ishimaru, Y., Iida, I. Transverse swelling behavior of hinoki (Chamaecyparis obtusa) revealed by the replica method. J Wood Sci 47, 178–184 (2001) doi:10.1007/BF01171219

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Key words

  • Replica method
  • Wood
  • Swelling anisotropy
  • Organic liquid
  • Cell wall