Green Composites for Potential Substitution of E-Glass Composites and Plastics: Mechanical Properties of Natural Fibers Composites

Green Composites for Potential Substitution of E-Glass Composites and Plastics: Mechanical Properties of Natural Fibers Composites

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-4837-9.ch006


This chapter provides a comparative study of the mechanical properties for different natural fiber composites. These composites consist of natural fiber 8-harness stain weave fabric reinforcing an epoxy matrix. The analytical model discussed in Chapter 5 is used to evaluate the elastic and ultimate strengths properties. The comparison is made according to the calculated specific modulus and specific strength. The Natural Fiber Reinforced Polymer (NFRP) composites are compared together according to their categories and yet compared to a similar E-glass/epoxy composite. In addition, a polypropylene and a thermoplastic composite are used also as reference materials. It is shown that some NFRP especially those belonging to the Bast and Leaf categories provide better properties than the plastics and also the E-glass/epoxy composite. Overall the Flax/epoxy composite could be considered the optimum choice in terms of properties since it has high specific modulus and strength.
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In this part, the specifications of the chosen fabric as well as the required materials for the analytical model are discussed. The studied material is a fiber reinforced polymer composite. The matrix type is chosen to be epoxy with mechanical properties shown in Table 1. The reinforcement used is the natural fiber discussed mainly in Chapters 2 and 4. The fibers are assumed to be in the shape of an 8-Harness satin weave fabric. This fabric that belongs to 2D woven category is considered as a balanced fabric. The warp and weft yarns have the same yarn’s count and Tex (g/1000m). This means that the in-plane tensile modulus and strengths are the same. This fabric is specified by a long straight warp/weft yarn interlaced under one warp/weft - yarn/layer and then above seven yarns as shown in Figure 1. The longer straight yarn of the 8-harness satin weave compared to a typical plain weave fabric provides higher tensile strength. The fabric has properties quite similar to a cross-ply [0, 90] laminated composite. Moreover, it provides more drapability which is an important factor for the manufacturing of complex shapes. This fabric assumed to be made by different natural fiber is used in the comparative study as a study case.

Figure 1.

The 8 harness satin weave composite

The analytical model to be used requires some specific input parameters. These parameters consist of geometrical parameters and material properties. The geometrical parameters are related to the fabric used, which is in this case the 8-Harness satin weave. The required geometrical parameters are the yarn’s width and height, in addition to the spacing between yarns as shown in Table 1.

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