ORONO, Maine – Researchers at the University of Maine are receiving $700,000 in grants to develop environmentally friendly particleboard panels.

The money is from P3Nano, a public-private partnership started by the federal Endowment for Forestry and Communities and the U.S. Forest Service.

One $350,000 grant will help UMaine scientists to make strong, recyclable particleboard panels for use as countertops, doors and furniture. Another grant will help the university to build a commercial scale plant to manufacture two tons of cellulose nanofibrils per day. UMaine researchers say cellulose nanofibrils are an adhesive that is an alternative to formaldehyde. A Massachusetts company is collaborating with the university on the plant, which will be built at a Turners Falls, Massachusetts mill.

UMaine’s proposals and seven others that are receiving grants were among 65 submissions.

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