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Weyerhaeuser develops cellulose-reinforced composites

October 10, 2012

Weyerhaeuser Co. has developed thermoplastic composites based on cellulose fiber as a reinforcement.

The Federal Way, Wash., company says its Thrive products are based on sustainably sourced fiber. It targets household goods such as furniture, appliances and industrial goods. Thrive is supplied in masterbatch form for compounders and processors.

“Thrive composites are economical and widely available, and they are low mass yet demonstrate excellent tensile strength and flexural properties, says Don Atkinson, vice president of marketing and new products for the firm’s cellulose fibers business. “These composites can improve molding cycles up to 40 percent.”

Ford Motor Co. has begun examining using wood composites in future vehicles to cut weight and fuel emissions. It has worked with Weyerhaeuser to prove out potential use of more sustainable composite materials.

Thermal stability can allow Ford to extend the range of potential auto uses, says Ellen Lee, plastics research technical expert at Ford.

For Weyerhaeuser, tel. 800-525-5440 or 253-925-2345.