Browse Publications Technical Papers 2004-01-0728

The Effect of Surface Modification on the Mechanical Properties of Hemp Fiber/Polyester Composites 2004-01-0728

In this work hemp fibers were chemically treated in order to improve the fiber/matrix interaction in hemp fiber/unsaturated polyester composites prepared by a Resin Transfer Molding (RTM) process. Chemicals used for paper sizing (AKD, ASA, Rosin Acid and SMA) as well as a silane compound and sodium hydroxide were used to modify the fibers' surface. The tensile, flexural and impact properties of the resulting materials were measured. A slight improvement in mechanical properties was observed for the SMA, silane and alkali treated specimens. However close analysis of these tests and of the fracture surface of the samples showed that there was no amelioration of the fiber/matrix adhesion. It was found that predicted tensile strengths using the rule of mixture were very close to the experimental values obtained in this work. Finally the properties of an hybrid glass fiber/hemp fiber composite were found to be very promising


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