A scanning process has been developed to make wood knot-free for the timber frame market.

The Building Research Establishment (BRE), in association with Innovativ Vision Wood Eye, is using cameras and lasers to identify knot positions and establish positions for cross-cutting so no knot groupings clash with the required nailing points for timber frame.

The BRE said it obviates the need to reject timber unnecessarily or remove the knots by processes such as finger-jointing.

Further development of the technique and other innovative processes are part of a DTI Partners in Innovation project on timber scanning technology and a related Forestry Commission-sponsored project.