Title: Falling weight impact damage characterisation on flax/epoxy laminates

Authors: Carlo Santulli

Addresses: Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Rome 'Sapienza', Via Eudossiana 18, 00184 Rome, Italy

Abstract: Unidirectional flax/epoxy laminates manufactured using different threads (0.2, 0.9 and 2.3 mm diameter) of untreated flax fibres were tested statically and dynamically (falling weight impact) in a three-point flexural rig. Despite the lower amount of fibres introduced (31% wt. against 55% wt. for both the other laminates), the laminates manufactured using the finest thread did not show lower mechanical properties. This outcome was explained by improved resin impregnation and consequent lower void content, resulting in lower spalling (material loss at rear). Also the study of impact hysteresis curves clarified that a comparable penetration energy is absorbed from the three laminates.

Keywords: natural fibres; fibre reinforced composites; flax fibres; falling weight impact; impact damage characterisation; flax-epoxy laminates; resin impregnation; void content; spalling; impact hysteresis curves.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMPT.2009.027833

International Journal of Materials and Product Technology, 2009 Vol.36 No.1/2/3/4, pp.221 - 228

Available online: 12 Aug 2009 *

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