Design and Analysis of Natural Fibre Reinforced Epoxy Composites for Automobile Hood 2019-28-0086
The need for eco-friendly materials is recently increasing in the automobile and aerospace sectors. Material selection for automobile components is influenced by various factors such as cost, weight and strength. Natural fibers offers various advantages over conventional materials such as environmental friendly, easily available, recyclable and higher specific strength. Among the natural fibers Sisal and Kenaf fibers are selected for present study due to their good mechanical properties and availability. Kenaf fibers have great potential to be used as construction and automotive materials due to their long fibers which are derived from the bast. Sisal fibers do not absorb moisture and possess good impact, sound absorbing properties and high fire resistance properties. Epoxy LY556 is selected as matrix material to bind the combination of these two natural fibers due to its high temperature resistance and adherence to reinforcements. Alkaline treatment was carried out to remove the moisture from the natural fibers. Fabrication of epoxy/Kenaf fibre/Sisal Fibre composite materials of different stacking sequence was carried out by Vacuum Assisted Resin Transfer Molding (VARTM) method. These composites were tested for mechanical properties such as Tensile strength, Flexural Strength and Impact strength as per ASTM Specifications. The best stacking sequence of composite material was chosen from mechanical testing and was selected for fabrication of Automobile Hood. To reduce air effect in an automobile, Hood is designed to aerodynamic in shape. It also provides access to maintenance of power drive belts, power train and battery. FEA analysis such as Static, CFD and modal analysis was carried out on the automobile hood.