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Tropical Timber Information Center

The Tropical Timber Information Center (TTIC) provides wood identification services and information on the properties and uses of tropical and domestic woods. Accurate identification of imported timbers helps to insure authenticity for proper wood utilization.  Tropical species imported into the US include such woods as Balsa, Cedro, Ipé (Brazilian walnut), Jatoba (Brazilian cherry), Keruing (Apitong), Mahogany, Meranti (Lauan), Sapele, and Teak to name a few.   Uses include flooring, decking, interior finishing, cabinetry and plywood.   

TTIC is the home of the Harry Philip Brown Memorial Wood Collection, a repository of about 40,000 wood samples from Africa, Asia, Europe, North America and South America.  Unique to this collection is the Project 1 North American Wood Collection which contains wood specimens collected from about 780 trees throughout the US and Canada. 

TTIC provides:

  • Wood identification for both tropical and domestic woods
  • Information on properties and uses of imported timbers as well as domestic species
  • Authenticated wood samples for loan to researchers
  • Over 5,000 microscope slides of wood samples for loan to researchers
  • Digital images of wood anatomical features
    • scanning electron micrographs of domestic woods
    • light micrographs in progress
  • Project 1 North American wood samples are available for research/wood collections
  • Imaging: Light microscopy, Scanning EM and Transmission EM of wood samples is available in nearby facilities: the NC Brown Center for Ultrastructure Studies and Analytical and Technical Services
  • Wood property testing available in the Wood Products Engineering Laboratory

Harry Philip Brown Memorial Wood Collection

The Harry Philip Brown Memorial Wood Collection (Brown Wood Collection or BWC) is named for a former Chair of the Department of Wood Technology at ESF, who started the wood collection in the 1920’s, and initiated and organized the Project 1 North American collection.

  • Collection: Total about 40,000 specimens, with about 2,100 genera; sample identifier, BWCw
  • Project 1 North American samples; about 780 samples; collection originated at ESF
  • Herbarium vouchers:
    • Yes, for the North American special collection known as Project I and a small number of other special items: 1,000
    • Records kept of vouchers deposited elsewhere; about 97% of collection.
  • Important collections: Brown Project 1 (United States, Canada); Krukoff (Africa, Brazil, Sumatra); Maguire et al. (Guayana Highlands); Prance (Amazon Basin); Mori (northern South America); Wood Technology Project I (North America); A.C. Smith (Guiana, Fiji); Pittier (Venezuela, Panama); Cuatrecasas (Colombia); Kanehira (Micronesia, east Asia); Lecomte (Madagascar, Indochina); Gamble (India); Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Forestal (Mexico); Desch (Malaya); Ducke (Brazil); Rimbach (Ecuador); Williams (Peru, Mexico); Stahel (Surinam); Bena (French Guiana).

TTIC is a unit of the department of Sustainable Resources Management, and is located in Baker Laboratory on the campus of the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse, New York.