Adding Value During the Processing of Panel Products: Final Report

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Adding Value During the Processing of Panel Products: Final Report

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University of Minnesota, Duluth


Technical Report


Minnesota is the leading producer of oriented strand board (OSB) panels. These panels are typically commodity products such as wall and roof sheathing. This project endeavored to add value to these panels by applying a medium density overlay (MDO) paper and an aspen fiber mat to the surface of the panel. Typical uses of MDO panel products are concrete forms, siding, soffits, signs, and other industrial applications. MDO was applied to OSB panels primarily in a two-step operation so that the results could be used by a primary producer or by a secondary manufacturer. The research effort was aimed at optimizing the methods and operating parameters related to MDO application and to evaluate the panels for various end uses. Additionally, the application of an aspen fiber mat as an overlay or in combination with an MDO was investigated. The report describes in detail the development of recommended process parameters for twostep overlaying of industrial use MDO panels made with an OSB substrate. Full size panels were manufactured successfully using these optimized parameters in a pilot plant press. Also included in the report is a draft preliminary business plan for a fictitious company, MDO Panel Products Inc. This exercise was started to enable an entrepreneur or a primary manufacturer to take the information developed at NRRI and apply it. While the numbers used are preliminary, the economics of such an endeavour appear to be excellent. Finally, aspen fiber mat has been successfully applied in a two-step manufacturing process. This aspect of the study was much more difficult than originally conceived because of the apparent moisture content intolerance of the fiber mat. This work has indicated good potential for economic development and will be continued and expanded with funding of the current GMC proposals. Specifically the new work will look at stress skin panels as building components and further developments of layered composite panels.


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Edwardson, Christian F. (1989). Adding Value During the Processing of Panel Products: Final Report. Retrieved from the University Digital Conservancy,

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