Local furniture and handicrafts industries can now guarantee and maintain the quality of their products through a locally produced digital wood moisture meter developed by the Department of Science and Technology’s Forest Products Research and Development Institute (FPRDI). Because of this efficient and low cost invention, the FPRDI team composed of Dr. Marina A. Alipon, Gil B. Dolotina, Grecelda A. Eusebio, Gerwin P. Guba, and Alvin E. Retamar, won the F.O. Tesoro Technology Transfer Award at the recently concluded 2009 Los Banos Science Community Foundation Inc.- National Science and Technology Week (NSTVV) celebration.
At the awarding ceremony, team leader Dr. Alipon revealed that her team designed the wood moisture meter especially for small players in the furniture and handicrafts sector. This meter intends to replace the imported and expensive wood moisture meters in the market with a meter made expressly for local wood species. The imported meters were not made to read local wood species and had to be recalibrated before they can give accurate readings – a costly and time-consuming process.
Dr. Alipon further explained that the quality of finished wood products depends on the moisture content of the wood used. Thus, the lumber of wood products must be dried to the moisture content prevailing in their intended place of use. Otherwise, the wood will shrink or crack resulting to very expensive repair jobs.