In this study, bio-oil from the fast pyrolysis of renewable biomass was used as the raw material to synthesize bio-oil phenol formaldehyde (BPF) resin—a desirable resin for fabricating phenolic-based material. During the synthesis process, paraformaldehyde was used to achieve the requirement of high solid content and low viscosity. The properties of BPF resins were tested. Results indicated that BPF resin with the bio-oil addition of 20% had good performance on oxygen index and bending strength, indicating that adding bio-oil could modify the fire resistance and brittleness of PF resin. The thermal curing behavior and heat resistance of BPF resins were investigated by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA). Results showed that adding bio-oil had an impact on curing characteristics and thermal degradation process of PF resin, but the influence was insignificant when the addition was relatively low. The chemical structure and surface characteristics of BPF resins were determined by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The analysis demonstrated that adding bio-oil in the amount of 20% was able to improve the crosslinking degree and form more hydrocarbon chains in PF resin.
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