Particle Board History and development

Particleboard originated in Germany. It was first produced in 1887, when Hubbard made so-called “artificial wood” from wood flour and an adhesive based on albumin, which was consolidated under high temperature and pressure. [3]

Although the use of two or three layers of wood veneer is ancient, modern 4′ x 8′ sheets of plywood with 5-11 core layers of veneer were invented in the early 20th century, and began to become common by the Second World War. During the war, phenolic resin was more readily accessible than top grade wood veneer in Germany, and Luftwaffe pilot and inventor Max Himmelheber played a role in making the first sheets of particleboard, which were little more than pourings of floor sweepings, wood chips, and ground up off-cuts and glue.[citation needed] The first commercial piece was produced during World War II at a factory in Bremen, Germany.[clarification needed] For its production, waste material was used – such as planer shavings, offcuts or sawdust – hammer-milled into chips and bound together with a phenolic resin. Hammer-milling involves smashing material into smaller and smaller pieces until they can pass through a screen. Most other early particleboard manufacturers used similar processes, though often with slightly different resins.

It was found that better strength, appearance and resin economy could be achieved by using more uniform, manufactured chips. Producers began processing solid birch, beech, alder, pine and spruce into consistent chips and flakes; these finer layers were then placed on the outside of the board, with its core composed of coarser, cheaper chips. This type of board is known as three-layer particleboard.

More recently, graded-density particleboard has also evolved. It contains particles that gradually become smaller as they get closer to the surface