Wood Science and Technology

, Volume 37, Issue 5, pp 339–348 | Cite as

Modification of wood with silicon compounds. inorganic silicon compounds and sol-gel systems: a review

  • Carsten Mai
  • Holger Militz


This review describes the treatment of wood with various inorganic silicon compounds. Among these compounds silicofluorides represent one of the long-known classes of wood preservatives based on silicon. Data on an organic fluorosilicon compound (“silafluofen”) are additionally presented. The mode of action of these fluorides is based on their biocidal action. “Water glass”, an alkali silicate, was able to enhance the durability of wood but showed some important drawbacks. Because of its high hygroscopicity and its high pH values, increased moisture absorption and strength loss of wood was frequently observed. Wood treated with tetraalkoxysilanes showed an enhanced dimensional stability, especially when the hydrolysis and the condensation of the silanes was controlled to react within the cell wall. Durability and fire resistance were improved to a certain degree and could be significantly enhanced by addition of boron compounds.


Silicic Acid Fire Resistance Water Glass Weight Percent Gain Untreated Wood 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



antishrink efficiency


(preservatives based on) copper, chromium, arsenic


colloidal silicic acid solution


energy dispersive X-ray analysis


electron probe X-ray microanalysis




moisture-excluding efficiency


modulus of elasticity


relative humidity


silicic acid monomer solution


scanning electron microscopy


tetraethoxysilane/triethyl orthosilicate




thermogravimetric analysis










weight percent gain


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Wood Biology and TechnologyUniversity of GöttingenGöttingenGermany

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