Peter Laks

Peter Laks
"Wood is good!"
  • Research Professor, SFRES
  • PhD, Wood Science, University of British Columbia
  • MS, Physical Organic Chemistry, Simon Fraser University
  • BS, Bio/Organic Chemistry, Simon Fraser University

Wood Protection Group

Wood-based products are the most popular building materials in North America and many other parts of the world. The mission of my research group is to foster the use of effective, environmentally benign technologies that enhance the performance and durability of wood products in demanding applications through applied and basic research. Most of our work is done in cooperation with the forest products and chemical industries.

Our specific objectives are to:

  • Promote wood utilization in an environmentally conscientious manner that conserves our forests while meeting the needs of the public.
  • Assist in the development of economically and environmentally sound wood preservative systems.
  • Understand how wood preservative systems interact with wood, woody decay fungi, and wood destroying insects.
  • Provide technical support to the forest products industry, information to the wood products community, and expertise to the general public.
  • Apply problem-solving technologies to advance environmentally responsible growth of our forest products industries.

Links of Interest

Areas of Expertise

  • Fungal and insect resistance of wood-based composites
  • Preservative systems for solid and composite wood building products
  • Nanoparticle wood preservative systems
  • Field-testing of wood products for biodegradation resistance

Recent Publications

  • Robinson, S.C., Laks, P.E. and Richter, D.L. 2011. Stimulating Spalting in Sugar Maple Using Sub-lethal Doses of Copper. European Journal of Wood and Wood Products 69(4): 527-532.
  • G.M. Larkin, P.E. Laks, M. Mankowski, D. Schubert, N. Miller. 2010. Zinc-Boron-Silicate Wood Preservative Systems. Proceedings of the AWPA Annual Conference, pp.278-286.
  • P.E. Laks, D.L. Richter, G.M. Larkin, J.O. Eskola. 2010. A Survey of the Biological Resistance of Commercial WPC Decking. Proceedings of the 10th Pacific Rim Bio-Based Composites Symposium, pp. 193-201.
  • Robinson, S.C., Laks, P.E. 2010. The Effects of Sub-threshold Loadings of Tebuconazole, DDAC and Boric Acid on Wood Decay by Postia placenta. Holzforschung 64(4):537-543.
  • P.E. Laks, P. I. Morris, G.M. Larkin, and J.K. Ingram. 2008. Field Tests of naturally Durable North American Wood Species. International Research Group on Wood Preservation Doc. IRG/WP 08-10675. 

Recent Funding

  • Fungal Resistance of Treated Wood


  • A Survey of Marine Borer Attack in Florida and Hawaii

Research Projects

  • Biological Resistance of Wood-Plastic Composite Decking