With major auto manufactures rushing to green their upcoming vehicle lines as quickly as possible, Ford Motor Company has announced that it is researching an innovative material that may one day become as ubiquitous as plastic – liquid wood! The material is derived from waste wood, can be molded into different shapes, and the best news is that according to Ford, it is almost carbon neutral.
Liquid wood is a combination of lignin, a chemical compound derived from wood, and rubber. The wood used in its production can be anything from virgin timber to wood waste.
Ford’s interest in the material is part of its strategy to increase the amound of renewable resources used in the development of its vehicles. Liquid wood is attractive to them because they have found that a single piece of liquid wood can be recycled up to five times. According to the company this makes the material practically carbon neutral, although this would only account for the embodied energy in the product, not for its manufacturing.
Ford is intending to use the process for creating parts of the vehicle’s interior and the engine compartment. We can’t wait to see the first liquid wood cars roll out.