Advanced wood products lab opened

Friday 25 Oct 2019

Normally, German-built Kuka industrial robots are used for precision machining, high-speed assembly or other automated manufacturing tasks. However, Oregon State University has employed one of the US$300,000 machines for a more mundane purpose: cutting the cake at the grand opening of the new A.A. “Red” Emmerson Advanced Wood Products Laboratory.

It was a crowd-pleasing way to demonstrate some of the technical capabilities of the 14,000-square-foot lab. Along with the 80,000-square foot George W. Peavy Forest Science Center under construction nearby, the lab is part of a new Oregon Forest Science Complex that’s intended to nurture and showcase the state’s growing expertise in engineered wood products and mass timber construction.

The first piece of cake went to Anthony Davis, interim dean of the OSU College of Forestry and one of several speakers at the grand opening ceremony. “Wood is the only primary building material we can grow, and its effective use has to be a cornerstone in mounting an aggressive front in challenging our sustainability and climate crises,” he told the 150 or so people on hand for the event.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Oregon, said the state has an opportunity to take a leading role in the emerging mass timber construction industry, creating markets for Oregon timber and jobs for Oregon workers. Innovative products such as mass plywood panels manufactured by Freres Lumber of Lyons and cross-laminated timber panels made by D.R. Johnson of Riddle are already being used in the Oregon Forest Science Complex, he pointed out.

The A.A. “Red” Emmerson Advanced Wood Products Laboratory is home to the TallWood Design Institute, a partnership between OSU’s Colleges of Forestry and Engineering and the University of Oregon’s College of Design. The building is named for the co-founder of California timber company Sierra Pacific Industries, which donated US$6 million toward construction of the Oregon Forest Science Complex.

Share |

Copyright 2004-2020 © Innovatek Ltd. All rights reserved.