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Alternative wood found for school chairs

Rainier Allan Ronda (The Philippine Star) - September 16, 2015 - 10:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Science and Technology's Forest Products Research and Development Institute (FPRDI) has found two tree species that produce light wood, gubas and falcata, which can be used as alternatives to build school armchairs normally made of lauan.

In performance testing done by the FPRDI on school chairs made from indigenous tree gubas (Endospermum peltatum) and exotic tree falcata (Paraserianthes falcataria), these chairs were found to be as strong as those made from lauan, which yields moderately heavy wood.

“What this means,” says project leader Dwight Eusebio of the FPRDI, “is that we now have a sustainable wood source for our school chairs as the fast-growing falcata is the most widely planted species in Mindanao, especially in Caraga.”

The FPRDI had used school chairs manufactured for the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-funded project "Sawmilling of Ten Million Board Feet of Logs and Flitches in Caraga for Use of the Department of Education (DepEd) in the Manufacture of School Desks and Chairs (Phase 2).”

Romulo Aggangan, FPRDI director, said the DepEd requires that a school armchair can carry a load of at least 35 to 40 kilos.

However, he said that the armchairs made from gubas and falcata surpassed 2,500 kilos in the load tests, implying that the sample chairs were “overdesigned.”

This also indicates that gubas and falcata can now be used to make DepEd chairs, “something which has not been done before,” Aggangan said.

The performance tests were done at the FPRDI National Furniture Testing Center, a laboratory certified by the Philippine Accreditation Board.

ACIRC CARAGA CHAIRS DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES DEPARTMENT OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DWIGHT EUSEBIO FOREST PRODUCTS RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT INSTITUTE MANUFACTURE OF SCHOOL DESKS AND CHAIRS NATIONAL FURNITURE TESTING CENTER PHILIPPINE ACCREDITATION BOARD ROMULO AGGANGAN
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