Exploring physical and mechanical properties of OSB and underutilized species to be used in the Glulam industry
McKay, Aaron R. J.
Honours Bachelor of Science in Forestry
DisciplineNatural Resources Management
Engineered wood products
Mechanical properties (wood)
Oriented strand board (OSB)
Markets and market demand (wood products)
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Glulam lumber is a great building alternative to steel for its strength, aesthetics, and ecofriendly nature. Most of the Glulam produced in North America is made from Spruce, Pine, or Fir (SPF) species due to their superior strength characteristics and availability. There is a largely untapped market for underutilized species to be used in Glulam construction and engineered products such as OSB. This thesis provides an overview of the species currently used in the Glulam industry worldwide, a breakdown of OSB, and underutilized species such as birch as a potential product to be used in Glulam production. The physical and mechanical properties of OSB and a wide variety of tree species are discussed to compare different strengths between each species/ product. This literature review found that birch has favourable strength characteristics and, in theory, would prove beneficial in a Glulam beam. Like birch, mixed hardwood OSB was found to have similar strength properties to white pine used as a Glulam species. Incorporating underutilized species into Glulam design is essential because it will diversify the Canadian lumber market, help create a more resilient market, and improve efficiency in the Glulam industry.