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Compared to natural woods, synthetic woods have superior mechanical stability, thermal insulation, and flame retardancy owing to their hierarchically cellular microstructures and intrinsic advantages of the thermosetting matrix. Increasing the long-time fire resistance is very important to the practical application. In this study, we present a novel coating strategy by a vacuum-assisted sonication technique (sonocoating) with a rectorite nanosheet dispersion to create a uniform nanocoating on the channel walls of synthetic wood. Owing to ultrasonic energy and vacuum pressure, the nanosheet dispersion can penetrate deep down to form a layered nanocoating on the channel surface. The coated synthetic woods can withstand fire (400–600 °C) for more than 10 min with 62% mass retainment, surpassing uncoated synthetic woods and natural woods. Therefore, as a lightweight and strong composite with enhanced flame-retardant performance, the coated synthetic woods have huge potential applications in safe and energy-efficient buildings.

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Publication history

Received: 20 March 2022
Revised: 05 April 2022
Accepted: 06 April 2022
Published: 26 July 2022
Issue date: October 2022

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© Tsinghua University Press 2022

Acknowledgements

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 51732011, U1932213, and 22005290), the National Basic Research Program of China (No. 2021YFA0715700), the National Key Research and Development Program of China (No. 2018YFE0202201), Science and Technology Major Project of Anhui Province (No. 201903a05020003), the University Synergy Innovation Program of Anhui Province (No. GXXT-2019-028), and the Hefei Municipal Natural Science Foundation (No. 2021024). Z. Y. M. acknowledges the funding support by China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (No. 2021TQ0317) and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (No. WK2060000049). We would like to thank Prof. Dr. Yi Jin at Experimental Center of Engineering and Material Sciences, USTC for his assistance with thermophysical property analysis.

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Email: nanores@tup.tsinghua.edu.cn

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