URBANA, IL -- Corn follows rice hulls, coconut shells, straw stalks and recycled papers and the latest organic material to be tried as a viable alternative to wood for the production of composite panels.

Corn Board Manufacturing Inc. (CBMI) of McKinney, TX, has entered into a license agreement to utilize corn-based structual composite technology developed at the  University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
 
CBMI is branding the product as CornBoard. It was developed by U of I inventors, Dr. Nancy Sottos, Dr. Scott White and Dr. Thomas Mackin.

CornBoard is a composite board that uses corn husks and stalks (commonly referred to as corn stover) remaining in the field after corn is harvested. The structural composite is prepared by mixing the fibrous corn component with a polymer matrix, laminating the mixture and applying heat and pressure.

U of I said CornBoard is a green technology because when the corn stover is made into CornBoard, the CO2 is “trapped” in the material. Sequestering CO2 in CornBoard
alleviates the contribution of the decomposing biomass towards an increase of CO2 in the atmosphere.

According to CBMI, 2 acres of leftover corn stover biomass would produce enough CornBoard to build a two-story house supplying the roof decking, flooring, and outer wall sheathing. In addition, CBMI said it uses a non-toxic resin binder in CornBoard production.

Many Thicknesses, Many Uses
CMBI said it plans to introduce an Adirondack chair next spring as its first product. The chair will require no fasteners or adhesives for assembly. The company added that the chair will be the cornerstone of its ea Home Outdoor Furniture Collection, a line of outdoor furniture made from 100% CornBoard. 

In addition to furniture, CBMI said because CornBoard can be produced in varying densities, other potential uses kitchen cabinets, door cores and longboards.

Read the University of Illinois' press release.

  
CornBoard is featured in this RTA Adirondack
chair by Corn Board Manufacturing Inc.