acta satech Journal of the Life & Physical Sciences Babcock

Modification of wood tablet using vinegar and benzioc acid and its resistance against termite degradation
*Azeh Y.1, Gabriel O. A2., Yohanna B. P.1, Yahaya M.S.1,3, Agwuncha S.C.1, Oluwaseyi S. D.2, and Chidimma O.1
1Chemistry Department, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Niger State, Nigeria 2Department of Industrial Chemistry, University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Nigeria 3Department of Food Science and Technology, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Niger State, Nigeria
April 2018

This study focuses on the possible changes to the wood structure due to acetylation and benzoylation. Small wood tablets were treated with uncatalyzed vinegar and benzoic acid for different length of time to obtain acetylated and benzoylated wood. Different WPGs (Weight Percent Gains) were obtained with Shear butter (Vitellaria Paradoxa) and Madubiya “Counter wood” (Afzelia Africana), having 31 % and 25 % weight percent acetyl or benzoyl gains during 1 h acetylation / benzoylation. 3 h acetylation / benzoylation gave low WPGs due to de-esterification reaction. FT-IR (Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy) results proved the success of modification as it revealed new and important absorption bands. Scanning Electron microscopy (SEM) analysis of samples showed clearly the cell wall swelling effects of modifying agents on wood fiber morphology. Resistance of modified wood tablets against biodegradation was investigated by burial test experiment in termite ant-hill for a period of three months during the raining season. The protective effects of modifying agents on wood against termites were visibly clear. Termites were unable to biodegrade both acetylated and benzoylated wood tablets due to treatments. Untreated samples had varying degree of degradation. The protection offered by modifying agents will prolong the life time of wood used for building, roofing and other constructions involving woody materials.
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