Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 3

3
10006225
Study of Influencing Factors on the Flowability of Jute Nonwoven Reinforced Sheet Molding Compound
Abstract:
Due to increasing environmental awareness jute fibers are more often used in fiber reinforced composites. In the Sheet Molding Compound (SMC) process, the mold cavity is filled via material flow allowing more complex component design. But, the difficulty of using jute fibers in this process is the decreased capacity of fiber movement in the mold. A comparative flow study with jute nonwoven reinforced SMC was conducted examining the influence of the fiber volume content, the grammage of the jute nonwoven textile and a mechanical modification of the nonwoven textile on the flowability. The nonwoven textile reinforcement was selected to support homogeneous fiber distribution. Trials were performed using two SMC paste formulations differing only in filler type. Platy-shaped kaolin with a mean particle size of 0.8 μm and ashlar calcium carbonate with a mean particle size of 2.7 μm were selected as fillers. Ensuring comparability of the two SMC paste formulations the filler content was determined to reach equal initial viscosity for both systems. The calcium carbonate filled paste was set as reference. The flow study was conducted using a jute nonwoven textile with 300 g/m² as reference. The manufactured SMC sheets were stacked and centrally placed in a square mold. The mold coverage was varied between 25 and 90% keeping the weight of the stack for comparison constant. Comparing the influence of the two fillers kaolin yielded better results regarding a homogeneous fiber distribution. A mold coverage of about 68% was already sufficient to homogeneously fill the mold cavity whereas for calcium carbonate filled system about 79% mold coverage was necessary. The flow study revealed a strong influence of the fiber volume content on the flowability. A fiber volume content of 12 vol.-% and 25 vol.-% were compared for both SMC formulations. The lower fiber volume content strongly supported fiber transport whereas 25 vol.-% showed insignificant influence. The results indicate a limiting fiber volume content for the flowability. The influence of the nonwoven textile grammage was determined using nonwoven jute material with 500 g/m² and a fiber volume content of 20 vol.-%. The 500 g/m² reinforcement material showed inferior results with regard to fiber movement. A mold coverage of about 90 % was required to prevent the destruction of the nonwoven structure. Below this mold coverage the 500 g/m² nonwoven material was ripped and torn apart. Low mold coverages led to damage of the textile reinforcement. Due to the ripped nonwoven structure the textile was modified with cuts in order to facilitate fiber movement in the mold. Parallel cuts of about 20 mm length and 20 mm distance to each other were applied to the textile and stacked with varying orientations prior to molding. Stacks with unidirectional orientated cuts over stacks with cuts in various directions e.g. (0°, 45°, 90°, -45°) were investigated. The mechanical modification supported tearing of the textile without achieving benefit for the flowability.
2
10002740
Effect of Starch and Plasticizer Types and Fiber Content on Properties of Polylactic Acid/Thermoplastic Starch Blend
Abstract:
Polylactic acid (PLA) is the most commercially available bio-based and biodegradable plastic at present. PLA has been used in plastic related industries including single-used containers, disposable and environmentally friendly packaging owing to its renewability, compostability, biodegradability, and safety. Although PLA demonstrates reasonably good optical, physical, mechanical and barrier properties comparable to the existing petroleum-based plastics, its brittleness and mold shrinkage as well as its price are the points to be concerned for the production of rigid and semi-rigid packaging. Blending PLA with other bio-based polymers including thermoplastic starch (TPS) is an alternative not only to achieve a complete bio-based plastic, but also to reduce the brittleness, shrinkage during molding and production cost of the PLA-based products. TPS is a material produced mainly from starch which is cheap, renewable, biodegradable, compostable, and nontoxic. It is commonly prepared by a plasticization of starch under applying heat and shear force. Although glycerol has been reported as one of the most plasticizers used for preparing TPS, its migration caused the surface stickiness of the TPS products. In some cases, mixed plasticizers or natural fibers have been applied to impede the retrogradation of starch or reduce the migration of glycerol. The introduction of fibers into TPS-based materials could reinforce the polymer matrix as well. Therefore, the objective of the present research is to study the effect of starch type (i.e. native starch and phosphate starch), plasticizer type (i.e. glycerol and xylitol with a weight ratio of glycerol to xylitol of 100:0, 75:25, 50:50, 25:75 and 0:100) and fiber content (i.e. in the range of 1-25 %wt) on properties of PLA/TPS blend and composite. PLA/TPS blends and composites were prepared using a twin-screw extruder and then converted into dumbbell-shaped specimens using an injection molding machine. The PLA/TPS blends prepared by using phosphate starch showed higher tensile strength and stiffness than the blends prepared by using native one. In contrast, the blends from native starch exhibited higher extensibility and heat distortion temperature (HDT) than those from the modified starch. Increasing xylitol content resulted in enhanced tensile strength, stiffness and water resistance, but decreased extensibility and HDT of the PLA/TPS blend. Tensile properties and hydrophobicity of the blend could be improved by incorporating silane treated-jute fibers.
1
9341
Energy Systems and Crushing Behavior of Fiber Reinforced Composite Materials
Abstract:

Effect of geometry on crushing behavior, energy absorption and failure mode of woven roving jute fiber/epoxy laminated composite tubes were experimentally studied. Investigations were carried out on three different geometrical types of composite tubes (circular, square and radial corrugated) subjected to axial compressive loading. It was observed in axial crushing study that the load bearing capability is significantly influenced by corrugation geometry. The influence of geometries of specimens was supported by the plotted load – displacement curves of the tests.

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