Timber Transforming its Role in the Future of Construction

5 December 2022

Timber may be one of the oldest and most common building materials, but innovations like these are transforming its role in the future of construction.

Here are four Australian projects designed to make the most of plantations and stretch our wood resources further.

1. Reimagining densified wood – Wood densification via various compression methods improves the strength and enhances the fire resistance of low-density wood. Resistant to indentation, scratching and abrasion, densified wood is the perfect material for parquet flooring or surfaces such as benchtops.

2. Composite reinforced timber – Wood-based load-bearing structures consisting of laminated mass timber columns, walls, and floors are often constrained by serviceability or fire performance.

3. Hybrid FRP-timber thin-walled sections – Much of our built environment is made up of steel in the form of thin-walled sections, said Associate Professor Joe Gattas, also from the UQ School of Civil Engineering and the ARC Future Timber Hub.

4. Plantation hardwood cross-laminated timber – The lowest carbon route to construct a building often doesn’t involve significant material modification, said Associate Professor Jon Shanks, Director of TimberED Services and Associate Professor in Timber Engineering at the University of Tasmania.

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