All labs are in close proximity to one another making it very convenient to cut samples for testing and jumping between labs. Labs BB1012, 1014 and 1016 are beside each other and connected through internal doors and the Wood Work Shop (BB1015) is across the hall.
The analytical backbone of the laboratory is the Tinius Olsen Universal Wood Testing Machine (H10KT, H50KT, and impact tester). These are new state-of-the-art machines which are industry standards for measuring wood and wood product mechanical properties. This equipment is connected to a PC for data collection and testing.
With the equipment in the laboratory a number of tests can be conducted, and include;
- tension parallel and perpendicular to the grain,
- compression parallel to the grain,
- nail and screw withdrawal,
- 3-point flexure.
The Lakehead University Wood Science Testing Laboratory has a wet laboratory and houses the equipment needed to prepare wood samples for various research activities. This lab also contains microscopes (compound and stereo) with digital camera photo abilities, microtomes, desiccators (pump driven), glassware, balances, fume hood, chemical storage cabinet, many bits and pieces to go with a wet lab of this nature.
Out-of-doors, the laboratory has a milling operation on campus for teaching, research and demonstration. This is a 2-acre site with logs, container for storage, a Wood Mizer LT 40 portable band sawmill, a portable diesel pellet maker and a portable twin edger.
Lakehead University Wood Science & Testing Facility (LUWSTF, BB1014)
The LUWSTF is a new facility with state-of-the-art testing machines. This facility has been developed to carry out mechanical property tests on wood and wood products. There is also the ability in this lab to do hot press runs for composite research as well as large ovens for physical property research projects.
The LUWSTF is one of Lakehead's newest analytical facilities with state-of-the-art testing machines. The labs are continually being upgraded with funding obtained by Dr. Leitch.
Wood Science Research Lab (BB1012)
This facility is a wet lab and houses the equipment needed to prepare wood samples for various research activities. Mainly this is a prep facility and microscopy facility.
This lab contains microscopes (compound and stereo) with digital camera photo abilities, microtomes, desiccators (pump driven), glassware, balances, fume hood, many bits and pieces to go with a wet lab of this nature, chemical storage cabinets.
Wood Science Teaching Lab (BB1016)
This facility is mainly used for teaching of undergraduate and postgraduate students. It is also used for running short courses in the area of Wood Science and Forest Products. The sort of course material that can be offered within the LUWSTF is wood identification techniques, wood physical property measuring techniques, power tool operation and safe use, mechanical testing of wood and wood products and, a variety of specialized course material as requested by a client.
The main equipment is student microscopes and associated gear to go with safely cutting up and sectioning wood samples for examination.
The laboratory's inventory has increased over the past year. Now in total the Lakehead University Wood Science Testing Facility includes the following equipment:
- X-ray densitometer: wood internal density and structures,
- Taber tester: abrasion testing on flooring and other surfaces,
- Very large and small drying oven: used in sample preparation,
- Two 50, 000lb presses (larger one is a hot press): for testing green
- Mobile kiln: for field work studies which runs on propane and solar energy,
Weighing facilities: for pulp chip and solid wood work,
- Impact tester: used to test suitability of birch and ash for products such as shovel handles and baseball bats.
- Bomb calorimeter: for energy testing and thermal characterization,
- Portable diesel pellet maker: allows for bio-fuel commercialization research investigating bench-scale to pilot-scale studies.
- Field portable winch: for physically dragging downed trees to road-side for research and development purposes.
- Conditioning chamber: used to store wood at constant conditions before testing.