Wood is a hygroscopic material that primarily adapts its moisture content to the surrounding relative humidity. The climate in a structure or building depends on the building type and the region the structure is located in. In this study, the effect of region on the moisture content of wood was investigated. Measurements taken in 12 ventilated timber structures were compared to the theoretical equilibrium moisture content calculated from the relative humidity and temperature in 107 meteorological stations across Switzerland. The monitored load-bearing elements were made of softwood and protected from the direct impact of weather. The climatic conditions around the Alps, a mountain range that runs from France to Austria and crosses Switzerland, can be divided into the following three different regions: (1) south of the Alps, where the climate is affected mainly by the Mediterranean sea; (2) north of the Alps, where the climate is affected by the Atlantic Ocean; and (3) the inner Alps, where the climate is considered to be relatively dry. The climatic conditions of the three separate regions were reflected in the measurements made in the monitored timber structures. Differences between the regions were quantified. The moisture content and relative humidity, similarly to temperature, depended on altitude (above sea level).
The feasibility of a portable NIR sensor for off-line determination of diverse wood quality aspects relevant in the production of glue-laminated timber was demonstrated. The best performance was noticed for assessing wood moisture content, with a lower capacity to estimate wood density and mechanical properties. NIR spectroscopy was modestly capable of predicting surface roughness. However, the traceability of the raw resources and the automatic classification of diverse wood defects were successfully demonstrated. The developed chemometric model could predict the total delamination and detailed delamination length. Finally, recommendations regarding further system development were provided with the aim of implementation and integration of the NIR measurement into glue-laminated timber production plants.
According to Eurocode 8 moderate to high dissipative behaviour of timber structures requires sufficient ductility of the critical regions. Earlier experiments on timber connections with slotted-in steel plates and laterally loaded common steel dowels rarely achieved high ductility values. Connections consisting of LVL-C members, dowel-type fasteners with different post-elastic steel properties, full confinement of the timber member and measures to restrain the notch effect were investigated by means of monotonic and cyclic tests with regards to the displacement ductility. The measures taken proved to be effective in enhancing the plastic deformation capacity of the steel dowels to a large extent. However, a new aspect was observed: the constriction of the dowels in the contact area with the plate. The research results provided a better understanding of the factors influencing the behaviour of slotted-in steel plate connection.
Until today, all known timber building systems allow only slabs with a uniaxial load bearing action. In the framework of a large research project a new timber slab system has been developed and already tested in first real applications. The developed slab system is designed for housing, commercial and industrial buildings. The slab system works as a flat slab carrying vertical loads biaxial and consists of timber slab elements like CLT glued together on site with a high performing butt-joint bonding technology. This technology was called Timber structures 3.0 (TS3). Several research and tests about the performance of the different slab elements and the butt-joint bonding have been performed. First structures have been built and proof the system.