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Title: Investigating the mechanical properties of flax-based thermoplastic composite manufactured from different processes
Authors: Ong, Felix Chuen Tze
Keywords: DRNTU::Engineering::Aeronautical engineering
Issue Date: 2015
Abstract: The past century saw the reliance on natural fibre waning in the 1930s to a renewed interest in the 21st century. As the world realigned its commitment to sustainable and environmental friendly development, the role of biomaterial in fulfilling this commitment is crucial. Research and development of Natural Fibre-Reinforced Thermoplastic Composites (NFRTCs) have been promising from specific natural fibres thus far and there has been an increasing application of NFRTCs in the automotive industry. This study focuses on two main production processes, compression moulding and thermoforming. The effect of using raw material films in compression moulding and “prepregs” in thermoforming on the eventual mechanical properties of the composite will be evaluated. The underutilised thermoforming process is brought to study in this project to provide an option for high volume production of parts using “prepregs”. The project results showed favourable results for thermoforming in providing high volume production to manufacturers without compromising much on material quality. In addition, the introduction of bio-based polymer poly-lactic acid as one of the manufacturing parameter also showed potential in making natural fibre composites 100% bio-manufactured. The results for PLA-based composites are comparable to petroleum-based polymer polypropylene as the matrix for the composite, enabling NFRTCs to become even more environmentally-friendly. However, incomplete fibre-matrix interfacial adhesion still plagued the composites fabricated which hindered them from reaching its full potential and manufacturing processes parameters are likely culprits contributing to the formation of flaws. While this report provides an understanding on the tensile properties of the composites produced from thermoforming, additional studies have to be done to study other properties in order to gain a more holistic understanding on the limitations and potential areas to improve for these composites.
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:MAE Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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