Institut für Verfahrenstechnik, Umwelttechnik und Techn. Biowissenschaften
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VOC Emissions of Wood and Wood Products and Their Influence on Indoor air Quality


Wir bitten um Verständnis, dass die Informationen über dieses Projekt derzeit nur in englischer Sprache verfügbar sind.


In order to determine the influence of a building material on the indoor air quality, the concentration of volatile organic compounds (VOC) emitted by the product is usually measured. For this purpose, a standardized test procedure is applied: A single test specimen is examined in a standardized emission test chamber under defined climatic conditions over a period of 28 days. Based on the results of this measurement conclusions on the influence of the material on the indoor air quality are drawn. In the course of this project, it has been investigated for the first time whether the results from measurements in emission test chambers are comparable to those in a real room, and to which extent other factors such as the user behavior affect the indoor air quality.

For this purpose, two model rooms, constructed out of wood-based building products were built in realistic scale and with climatic conditions according to the relevant standards. This enabled the measurement of volatile compounds in simulated real rooms but under laboratory conditions.

The comparison shows that the concentration of volatile compounds was much higher in the emission test chamber than in the model room. The emissions were determined over a period of 6 months simulating a realistic time-period until occupation of a building. The results after 6 months show that the concentration continuously decreases both in the model room and in the emission test chamber and reaches much lower values than on day 28. Thus, the standardized test method does not reflect the indoor air quality in a real timber construction.

 Link to research report (German version)


Figure: Model room made from wood composite (left) that was stepwise equipped as a bedroom (right)

Scientific partners:

  • Competence Centre for Wood Composites and Wood Chemistry, WOOD Kplus, Linz, Austria (
  • University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences - Boku, Department of Material Sciences and Process Engineering, Vienna, Austria (

Industrial Partners:


Leitung und Kontakt:

Dr.techn. Cornelia Rieder-Gradinger



Dipl.-Ing. Dr.techn. Bernhard Widhalm

Dipl.-Ing. Marko Kovacevic

Dipl.-Ing. Martin Lindemann

Helga Seidelmann

BSc (FH) Alexander Milovanovic

Ao.Univ.Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr.techn. Ewald Srebotnik