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Publication Information

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Title: Physical properties and consumer reaction to use of compressed wood bricks in southeast Alaska

Author: Brackley, Allen M.; Gorman, Robert; Peterson, Karen.;

Date: 2012

Source: Forest Products Journal. 62(7/8): 571-578

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: In late 2008, a group of business people and entrepreneurs in southeast Alaska became aware of a compressed wood brick product that could be used as an alternative fuel in existing wood-burning stoves and heating equipment. The product differed from many others on the market in that it contained no additive to promote binding and burn characteristics. In 2009, local materials in the form of sawmill residuals and chipped material from land clearing were collected, dried, and shipped to a producer in the northeast United States. A set of returned samples was sent to the University of Alaska Fairbanks Forest Products Laboratory for evaluation of physical properties. Survey methods were used to determine characteristics of wood-burning equipment and conditions at the time of test burns and to assess consumer reactions to the product as an alternative to cordwood. The price that people were willing to pay for such a product was also evaluated. Few differences were detected between bricks made from material available in southeast Alaska and those from outside the region. In addition, the duration of burn was significantly greater for consumers using modern wood-burning stoves approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency. Consumers expressed a high degree of satisfaction with the product, but their reported fuel of choice was still traditional cordwood. Twenty-nine percent of surveyed consumers were willing to pay a price of $200 a ton for the brick product.

Keywords: renewable energy, BioBricks, compressed wood, consumers

Publication Notes:

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Brackley, Allen M.; Gorman, Robert; Peterson, Karen. 2012. Physical properties and consumer reaction to use of compressed wood bricks in southeast Alaska. Forest Products Journal. 62(7/8): 571-578.


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