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Forest Products Laboratory
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726-2398
Phone: (608) 231-9200
Fax: (608) 231-9592


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How does it apply?

Evaluating Technology

Research at FPL evaluates technology needed for both new and existing housing and encompasses all types of residential structures in which wood or wood-based products are used as primary or secondary building components. Emphasis is on the improved use of traditional wood products, recycled and engineered wood composite materials, durability, moisture control, natural disaster resistance, and an improved living environment. The FPL research focuses primarily on housing structure and practical technologies that can be readily adopted by homebuilders, industry, and consumers. FPL also cooperates with partners in areas involving the latest theories and ideas in resource management, including water conservation.

To move new wood technologies into use, FPL has established strong links to industry and has played an active role in technology transfer and in the development of codes and standards. Our mission as a Federal research and development facility is to share skills, knowledge, technologies, methods of manufacturing, samples of manufacturing, and facilities among industries, universities, other government agencies, and institutions to ensure that scientific and technological developments are accessible to a wide range of users. This process is known as technology transfer, and our partners can further develop the technology we research into new products, processes, applications, materials, or services.

FPL research recognizes that construction technologies are changing, and more than ever, America needs housing that is affordable, energy-efficient, durable, and safe. In the 20th century, the traditional regional prototype for single-family homes was built with a shell of forest products 'dimensional lumber framing and plywood' on strip foundations with wood, plywood, plaster and drywall, and stone or brick masonry finishes. This prototype emerged at a time when land, fuel, forest products, and labor were relatively cheap and the pool of skilled workers in the building trades was relatively large.