skip to main content

Title: Investigation of the flexural and thermomechanical properties of nanoclay/graphene reinforced carbon fiber epoxy composites
Flexural and thermomechanical properties of the epoxy-based carbon fiber composites (CFCs) on addition of single and binary nanoparticles (nanoclay and graphene) have been investigated. It was found that nanoclay acts more effectively in increasing the stiffness of the CFCs, whereas graphene is more effective in achieving higher strength. Nanoclay-added samples exhibited highest flexural (64.5 GPa) and storage (25.3 GPa) modulus among all types. Graphene-added samples showed highest improvement (by 21%) in flexural strength and exhibited most stable thermomechanical properties with highest energy dissipation capability (3.1 GPa loss modulus) in flexural test and dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), respectively. By contrast, addition of binary nanoparticles reduced the stiffness and significantly increased the strain to failure (42%) of the composites. Optical microscopy and scanning electron microscopy indicated that addition of nanoparticles significantly reduced delamination and matrix cracking of the CFCs because of strong interfacial bonding and toughened matrix, respectively.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Materials Research
Page Range / eLocation ID:
3678 to 3687
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Transparent wood composites (TWCs) are a new class of light-transmitting wood-based materials composed of a delignified wood template that is infiltrated with a refractive- index-matched polymer resin. Recent research has focused primarily on the fabrication and characterization of single-ply TWCs. However, multi-ply composite laminates are of interest due to the mechanical advantages they impart compared to the single ply. In this work, 1- and 2-ply [0°/90°] TWC laminates were fabricated using a delignified wood template (C) and an acetylated delignified wood template (AC). The optical and mechanical properties of resultant C and AC TWC laminates were determined using ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy (UV-Vis) and tensile testing (5× replicates), respectively. In addition, the ability of classical lamination plate theory and simple rule of mixtures to predict multi-ply tensile modulus and strength, respectively, from ply-level mechanical properties were investigated and are reported herein. Experimental results highlight tradeoffs that exist between the mechanical and optical responses of both unmodified and chemically modified TWCs. Template acetylation reduced the stiffness and strength in the 0° fiber direction by 2.4 GPa and 58.9 MPa, respectively, compared to the unmodified samples. At high wavelengths of light (>515 nm), AC samples exhibited higher transmittance than the C samples. Above 687 nm, the 2-ply AC sample exhibited a higher transmittance than the 1-ply C sample, indicating that thickness-dependent optical constraints can be overcome with improved interfacial interactions. Finally, both predictive models were successful in predicting the elastic modulus and tensile strength response for the 2-ply C and AC samples. 
    more » « less
  2. Abstract Highlights

    CG modeling is performed to explore the thermomechanical behavior of PCN.

    Effects of nanoclay weight percentage and size on modulus are studied.

    Interface leads to nanoconfinement effect onTgand molecular stiffness.

    Correlations between molecular stiffness and modulus are identified.

    Simulations show spatial variation of dynamical heterogeneity.

    more » « less
  3. Nanoindentation coupled with Atomic Force Microscopy was used to study stiffness, hardness, and the reduced Young’s modulus of reduced graphene oxide. Oxygen reduction on the graphene oxide sample was performed via LightScribe DVD burner reduction, a cost-effective approach with potential for large scale graphene production. The reduction of oxygen in the graphene oxide sample was estimated to about 10 percent using FTIR spectroscopic analysis. Images of the various samples were captured after each reduction cycle using Atomic Force Microscopy. Elastic and spectroscopic analyses were performed on the samples after each oxygen reduction cycle in the LightScribe, thus allowing for a comparison of stiffness, hardness, and the reduced Young’s modulus based on the number of reduction cycles. The highest values obtained were after the fifth and final reduction cycle, yielding a stiffness of 22.4 N/m, a hardness of 0.55 GPa, and a reduced Young’s modulus of 1.62 GPa as compared to a stiffness of 22.8 N/m, a hardness of 0.58 GPa, and a reduced Young’s modulus of 1.84 GPa for a commercially purchased graphene film made by CVD. This data was then compared to the expected values of pristine single layer graphene. Furthermore, two RC circuits were built, one using a parallel plate capacitors made of light scribed graphene on a kapton substrate (LSGC) and a second one using a CVD deposited graphene on aluminum (CVDGC). Their RC time constants and surface charge densities were compared. 
    more » « less
  4. Thermoplastic resins (linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE), high-density polyethylene (HDPE), and polypropylene (PP)) reinforced by different content ratios of raw agave fibers were prepared and characterized in terms of their mechanical, thermal, and chemical properties as well as their morphology. The morphological properties of agave fibers and films were characterized by scanning electron microscopy and the variations in chemical interactions between the filler and matrix materials were studied using Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. No significant chemical interaction between the filler and matrix was observed. Melting point and crystallinity of the composites were evaluated for the effect of agave fiber on thermal properties of the composites, and modulus and yield strength parameters were inspected for mechanical analysis. While addition of natural fillers did not affect the overall thermal properties of the composite materials, elastic modulus and yielding stress exhibited direct correlation to the filler content and increased as the fiber content was increased. The highest elastic moduli were achieved with 20 wt % agave fiber for all the three composites. The values were increased by 319.3%, 69.2%, and 57.2%, for LLDPE, HDPE, and PP, respectively. The optimum yield stresses were achieved with 20 wt % fiber for LLDPE increasing by 84.2% and with 30 wt % for both HDPE and PP, increasing by 52% and 12.3% respectively. 
    more » « less
  5. null (Ed.)
    3-point flexural fatigue and Mode I interlaminar fracture tests were done to study the fatigue life and fracture toughness of nanoclay added carbon fiber epoxy composites. Fatigue life data was analyzed using Weibull distribution function, validated with Kolmogorov-Smirnov goodness-of-fit, and predicted by combined Weibull and Sigmoidal models, respectively. The nanophased samples showed more than 300% improvement in mean and predicted fatigue life. At 0.7 stress level, the nanophased samples passed the ‘run-out’ fatigue criteria (10 6 cycles), whereas, the neat samples failed much earlier. The interlaminar fracture toughness of nanophased samples was also enhanced significantly by 71% over neat samples. Optical and scanning electron microscopic images of the nanophased fractured samples revealed certain features that improved the respective fatigue and fracture properties of the composites. 
    more » « less