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Volume 41 Number 3 Volume 41 Number 4 Volume 41 Number 5

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Research articles

ScienceAsia 41 (2015): 251-258 |doi: 10.2306/scienceasia1513-1874.2015.41.251

Variability in chemical and mechanical properties of Pará rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) trees

Jirawat Riyaphana, Thitaporn Phumichaib, Trairat Neimsuwanc, Suteera Witayakrand, Krissada Sungsinge, Rangsarid Kaveetaa, Chalermpol Phumichaia,*

ABSTRACT:     Pará rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) is grown primarily for latex. Some clones (timber clones) are frequently planted for wood production. Rubberwood, from old rubber trees, is an important economic byproduct. In general, the quality of the wood depends on multiple factors, including chemical and mechanical properties. This study investigates the effects of clone variety, height (1.3 and 6.0 m above ground level), and the variation between clone and height on chemical and mechanical properties of seven Pará rubber clones (RRIT 251, RRIM 600, RRI-CH-35-59, RRI-CH-35-650, RRI-CH-35-1397, RRI-CH-35-1757, and RRI-CH-35-2086). Thirteen-year old trees were sampled selecting one tree per clone. Results showed that height had a significant effect on the chemical components of the wood. Furthermore, the interaction between clone and height also had an effect on the chemical composition of cellulose, hemicelluloses, lignin, and extractives. In contrast, the mechanical properties of rubberwood depended a lot on the clone variety. The chemical and mechanical properties of rubberwood were significantly correlated among the seven clones studied. RRI-CH-35-1757, RRI-CH-35-2086, and RRIM 600 had the highest values for holocellulose as the main chemical components and mechanical strength.

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a Department of Agronomy, Faculty of Agriculture, Kasetsart University, Bangkok 10900 Thailand
b Rubber Research Institute of Thailand, Phaholyothin Road, Chatuchak, Bangkok 0900 Thailand
c Department of Forest Products, Faculty of Forestry, Kasetsart University, Bangkok 10900 Thailand
d Kasetsart Agricultural and Agro-Industrial Product Improvement Institute, Kasetsart University, Bangkok 10900 Thailand
e Surat Thani Rubber Research Centre, Canthulee, Thachana, Surat Thani 84170 Thailand

* Corresponding author, E-mail: chalermpol.ph@gmail.com

Received 3 Jun 2014, Accepted 17 Aug 2015