Scientists from the University of Maryland have achieved complete removal of lingine from wood and obtained a new material, which they dubbed "nanowood". It really changes radically at the nanoscale, when after the removal of soft substances, a "skeleton" of strong and thin channels remains. Air moves along them strictly in one direction, and attempts to transfer heat in the transverse plane are almost impossible.
The nanowood manufacturing technique is simple, but expensive. In fact, wood is turned into an analogue of paper, for which it is first boiled in a mixture of sodium hydroxide and sulfide. The softened lingin and most of the hemicellulose are then removed with hydrogen peroxide. It turns out a loose mass with a lot of voids - if you press it, paper will come out, but the Americans decided to carry out the procedure of lyophilization, dry freezing, and received nanowood.
With the loss of lingine, the material loses a significant part of its weight, acquires a bright white color and begins to reflect sunlight. The microchannel structure is very strong, withstands crushing loads 30 times more than expanded polystyrene. If the panels are properly docked, then through the internal system of nanochannels, warm air can be supplied to almost any point of the structure, but it will not leave it, will not go into the environment - this is a new word in thermal insulation.
And nanowood, being a natural material at the base, is hypoallergenic and biodegradable perfectly, without creating any problems with disposal. True, it also burns very well, and it will not be easy to reconcile its application with the current building codes. Plus, the cost of production is questionable - by prototypes it is difficult to judge the costs of producing a potential commercial version of the material.