Title: Recent innovative results on natural fibre composites

Authors: Analia Vazquez, Ariel Stocchi, Celina Bernal

Addresses: INTECIN (UBA-CONICET), Department of Civil Engineering, Engineering Faculty, University of Buenos Aires, Las Heras 2214 (C1063ACV) Buenos Aires, Argentina. ' Institute of Material Science and Technology (INTEMA), University of Mar del Plata – National Research Council (CONICET), Av. Juan B. Justo 4302 – B7608FDQ – Mar del Plata, Argentina. ' Advanced Materials Group (GMA), Mechanical Engineering Department – Engineering Faculty, University of Buenos Aires, Av. Paseo Colon 850 – 1063 – Buenos Aires, Argentina

Abstract: A novel fibre treatment recently proposed in the literature was optimised in the case of woven jute fabric/vinylester laminates to obtain the best tensile properties. It consists on an alkali treatment superimposed to biaxial tensile stress. Optimisation was performed by changing the treatment time. The novel fibre treatment was compared with traditional chemical methods. Tensile properties exhibited a maximum with the treatment time at 4 h due to the less efficient period of time and to the excessive fibre damage for times shorter and longer than 4 h, respectively. All composites with fibres treated with alkali under stress exhibited improved tensile strength in comparison with the composites with untreated fibres or with fibres treated with traditional methods due to the better interfacial properties and the structural changes of the fibres promoted by the novel treatment. Stiffness values were only higher for the composite with fibres treated with alkali under stress for 4 h, probably in correspondence with a maximum in the stiffness of the individual fibres.

Keywords: natural fibres; fibre treatment; mechanical properties; fibre reinforced composites; jute fibres; woven fabric-vinylester laminates; alkali treatment; biaxial tensile stress; tensile strength; interfacial properties; structural changes; stiffness.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMPT.2009.027841

International Journal of Materials and Product Technology, 2009 Vol.36 No.1/2/3/4, pp.348 - 357

Available online: 12 Aug 2009 *

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