NIR Assessment of MUF Resin Quality for Composite Panel Production

Traditionally it takes many hours before the results from monitoring MUF (melamine urea formaldehyde) resins used in MDF manufacturing plants are available to production engineers. If the quality of the resin has varied from specification the costs of lost production can be huge.

This study determined that a real-time, near infrared (NIR) instrument can detect differences in MUF resin quality to a high degree of accuracy. These key resin properties include: viscosity, solids, formaldehyde content, specific gravity, refractive index, and automated bond evaluation system (ABES 120) strength testing.

Successful NIR calibration models were used to predict the properties of commercial resins both at a resin manufacturing plant and a MDF plant where, over eight weeks, control charts for several resin properties were generated to determine the variability of resin as delivered to the spray nozzle.

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