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Analysis and optimisation of the structural and property relationship of cellulose fibre-reinforced polylactide

The present work deals with the structural and property relationship between cellulose fibres, bio-based matrix and composite. In addition to the properties of the fibre and the matrix itself, such as the mechanical properties and stress-strain characteristics, fibre fineness and fibre length, the structure of the composite is clearly affected by procedural settings and the manufacturing process. The interaction between fibre and matrix, fibre orientation, voids and their distribution, as well as the thermal and mechanical stress on the fibre and matrix during the manufacturing process, all have a clear impact on the properties of the resulting composite. Often, these aspects are considered and interpreted separately from each other. The result is an incomplete elucidation of the structural and property relationship between cellulose fibres, bio-based matrix and composite. Predictions about mechanical properties are difficult to make and often vary widely in comparison with experimental data. The present work is an approach to analyse the influential parameters and their effects on the properties of the composites separately. Subsequently the results obrained are considered in an overall context and the influence of different parameters on the mechanical characteristics of the prepared composites are analysed. The reinforcing fibres used are on the one hand regenerated cellulose fibres with high strength, high elongation and low stiffness and on the other hand bast fibres with low toughness and high strength and stiffness. The bio-based polymer PLA (polyactide) is considered as a matrix. The experiments are carried out as comparability studies, however, and also deal with PP (polypropylene), MAPP (maleic anhydride-grafted PP) and PHB (poyhydroxybutyrate) as matrices. The transferability of the structural and property principles of cellulose fibre/PLA composites to cellulose fibre/PHB composites is evaluated. The production of the investigated composites is carried out by means of compression moulding and injection moulding with different process parameters. In addition to the elucidation of the structural and property relationship between fibre, matrix and composite, the present work offers approaches to improve the low impact strength of brittle bast fibre-reinforced PLA composites by the addition of cellulose fibres; the study also indicates how inadequate fibre/matrix interaction can be improved by the modification of the fibre/matrix interface . The collected data are used to create a model for the prediction of the tensile strength of compression- and injection-moulded cellulose fibre-reinforced PLA and PHB composites with a maximum of ± 20 % from the experimental results. This goal was achieved for both long fibre-reinforced composites (fibre length > 4 mm) and short-fibre-reinforced composites (fibre length < 4 mm). Thus, the present work represents an important contribution to better understanding of the behavior of cellulose fibre-reinforced bio-based plastics to make this group of composites calculable materials.

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Author
 Nina Graupner

Nina Graupner
Institut für Polymerwerkstoffe und Kunststofftechnik
Technische Universität Clausthal

Information

Free keywords: Polylactide (PLA), cellulose fibre-reinforced composite, lyocell fibre, mechanical characteristics, fibre/matrix adhesion, fibre orientation, voids, compression moulding, injection moulding, modelling
Institute / chair: Fakultät für Natur- und Materialwissenschaften der Technischen Universität Clausthal
Language: German
Technical consultant for expert services: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Gerhard Ziegmann, Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Alfred Weber, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jörg Müssig
Publication year: 2013
Provider: Wissenschaftlicher Arbeitskreis Kunststofftechnik (WAK) / Kunststoffe.de

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