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  • The photo shows a standard, upright masonry brick with 12 evenly arranged cavities. The cavities are filled with various types of fiber mats. In front of the brick is a large pile of brown beech-wood fibers and a small pile of white bico fibers.
    © Fraunhofer WKI

    Two research highlights from the Fraunhofer WKI will be on display at the Hannover Messe from the 22nd to the 26th of April 2024 in the “Schaufenster Bioökonomie” (Bioeconomy Showcase): thermal-insulation bricks filled with beech-wood fibers and a formaldehyde-free bio-adhesive for the production of wood-based materials. The “Bioeconomy Showcase” is a joint stand operated by Project Management Jülich (PtJ) and the Fachagentur Nachwachsende Rohstoffe e. V. (FNR). Research results from current bio-economy projects funded by the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) will be presented here.

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  • The photo shows the top of a lightweight moulded part with a square base (400 mm x 400 mm) and a total thickness of 40 mm. There are several differently shaped protrusions and indentations on the upper side. The material and surface structure is similar to a coarse fibreboard.
    © Fraunhofer WKI | Manuela Lingnau

    The Fraunhofer WKI will be presenting solutions for lightweight construction using renewable raw materials at the Hannover Messe from the 22nd to the 26th of April 2024. A wood-fiber-based molded part demonstrates the potential of lightweight hybrid materials and was produced using an automated molding machine. The process offers possibilities for the precision-fit production of complexly shaped components, furniture or insulation materials. Furthermore, the performance capabilities of renewable raw materials will be demonstrated with a ceiling system module on the basis of wood foam. The module can be utilized for the renovation of suspended ceilings in old buildings. The mosaic-like coffered ceilings exhibit a load-bearing capacity comparable to reinforced concrete, but are significantly lighter. The innovations can be seen on the Fraunhofer stand (Hall 2, Stand B24).

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  • The photo shows a horizontal wooden plank attached to a metal post.
    © Fraunhofer WKI | Manuela Lingnau

    From raw materials to recycling - at the Hannover Messe from the 22nd to the 26th of April 2024, the Fraunhofer WKI will be presenting new application possibilities for renewable raw materials at the Fraunhofer joint stand (Hall 2, Stand B24). The examples range from a wooden crash barrier for road traffic through to sustainable concrete construction materials made from residual materials. They demonstrate the potential of renewable raw materials for the circular economy.

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  • The photo shows a construction site, with a construction worker in the centre and a quarter shell being moved by a crane.
    © Fraunhofer WKI | Malte Mérono

    For the company Modvion AB in Gothenburg, researchers from the Fraunhofer WKI accompanied the bonding of the first wooden tower for commercial wind turbines on the construction site and advised the company on complex bonding processes. The so-called "Wind of Change Tower" of the energy provider Varberg Energi AB was inaugurated on 4 March 2024.

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  • © Fraunhofer WKI

    Is „bio“ always better? In the 19th episode of the science podcast series „Forsch!“, Dr. Tobias Robert, scientist at the Fraunhofer WKI, talks about his research into bio-based polymer binders. Polymer binders are produced in similar quantities to plastics. They can be used to produce not only adhesives, but also coatings, printing inks, reactive resins, 3D printing materials and many other products.

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  • The photo shows Dr. Steven Eschig (portrait photo).
    © Fraunhofer WKI

    As of 1st March 2024, Dr. Steven Eschig has taken over the management of the “Binders and Coatings” department at the Fraunhofer WKI. The chemist, who had already worked as a research associate at the Fraunhofer WKI, aims to further develop bio-based adhesives, coatings, flame retardants and other chemical products through interdisciplinary collaboration with industry and research partners. Dr. Steven Eschig succeeds Dr. Frauke Bunzel, who had been in charge of the department since December 2018.

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  • The photo shows a coniferous forest with 40-year-old trees standing relatively far apart.
    © Fraunhofer WKI | Tobias Krenn

    Within an interdisciplinary project in collaboration with partners, researchers from the Fraunhofer WKI have investigated the quality of softwood from differing silvicultural systems. The aim of the project was to improve the supply situation for the construction industry in view of climate change. From the results, recommendations for new plantations can be derived in order to specifically optimize wood quality and wood yield. Researchers at the Fraunhofer WKI addressed the visual sorting of softwood and determined that application-oriented sorting based on product requirements – and, consequently, more efficient use of wood resources – is possible in dependence on silvicultural parameters. A re-evaluation of various visual criteria can be advantageous.

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  • The photo shows a cube-shaped block of gray, grainy material with a large cavity. Inside is a block of brownish, loose material.
    © Fraunhofer WKI | Manuela Lingnau

    When it comes to sustainable development, the construction industry faces great challenges. In the ReMatBuilt project, experts from the Fraunhofer WKI and their partners are proving that the tasks associated with this can be solved with high-performance construction materials made of recycled and waste materials. They will be presenting their solutions to specialist audiences at the Hannover Messe Preview on February 21, 2024.

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  • The photo shows many people in an event room with large video screens.
    © LignoSilva Center of Excellence

    On 8 February 2024, the kick-off event for the new mentoring programme of the Fraunhofer WKI took place in Bratislava at the Slovak Centre of Scientific and Technical Information. The aim of the "Upgrade of the Centre of Excellence LignoSilva" project, which is funded by the European Union, is to strengthen scientific excellence and international research contacts. The Fraunhofer WKI will act as a mentor in the coming years.

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  • The photo shows a foamed half-shell with a cavity for the insulation of fittings
    © Fraunhofer WKI | Manuela Lingnau

    Researchers at the Fraunhofer WKI, in collaboration with the company IGP Chemie GmbH, have further developed a non-combustible filling and installation foam in such a way that it complies with construction-material class A1 and possesses low thermal conductivity. As a result, the installation of fire-resistant doors and windows and the sealing of openings in fire-resistant walls is simplified. In addition, the Fraunhofer WKI, in collaboration with project partner GWK Kuhlmann GmbH, has utilized the new foam in the production of prototypes for prefabricated insulation shells for fittings and valves - an innovation for fire protection in construction that will be further developed for industrial applications in a follow-up project.

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