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Improvement of Flexural Strength and Fatigue Properties of Glass Fiber/Epoxy Composites by Grafting Cellulose Nanofibers onto the Reinforcing Fibers



Recently, cellulose nanofibers (CNFs) have been added as a modifier to fiber- reinforced polymer composites (FRPs) to improve their mechanical performance. In this study, vacuum impregnation of CNFs onto glass fibers (GF) was proposed to avoid processing high viscosity resin or the formation of aggregations in the matrix. Therefore, different CNF concentrations (from 0 to 0.1 wt%) were prepared and used to investigate the effect of CNFs on flexural properties of GF-CNF/epoxy composites by three-point bending tests. A field-emission scanning electron microscope was used to characterize the strengthening mechanisms. Fatigue tests were conducted at a stress ratio of 0.1 and a frequency of 5 Hz. The results indicated an improvement in flexural properties of glass fiber-reinforced polymer with increasing CNF concentrations. The flexural strength of CNF-modified GF/Epoxy composites (GF-CNF/EP) increased slightly up to 6 %. However, the fatigue life was significantly improved by 5 times in comparison with the neat GF/epoxy composite. This suggested that the use of CNFs onto the GF surface can contribute to improving the flexural fatigue of GFRP. Mouhamadou


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