Turkish Journal of Agriculture and Forestry




Corn stalk is a renewable natural resource that currently has limited industrial utilization. The objective of this study was to examine some chemical properties of corn stalk (holocellulose, \alpha-cellulose, lignin and ash content, alcohol-benzene, hot and cold water solubility, and solubility in dilute alkali [1% NaOH]) and to evaluate its suitability for medium-density fiberboard (MDF) production. Panels were produced using mixtures of corn stalk (Zea mays indurata Sturt.) and pine (Turkish Pinus nigra) fibers in various proportions (from 0% to 100%). The panels produced had density levels of 0.6, 0.7, and 0.8 g cm^{-3}. The physical and mechanical properties of the manufactured panels were tested. Chemical analysis shows that the holocellulose, \alpha-cellulose, and lignin content of corn stalk was similar to that of wood and some other crop residues. The ash content of corn stalk was higher than that of soft- and hardwoods. Mechanical test results indicate that the panels produced utilizing solely corn stalk met the required standards, except the panels with a density of 0.6 g cm^{-3}. Increasing the pine fiber ratio in the panel mixture improved panel properties.

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