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The Flexural Strength and Modulus of a Randomly Oriented Carbon Fiber PEEK Composite



The objective of this investigation was to compare the flexural properties of highmodulus carbon fiber, thermoplastic matrix composite. With increased pressure from government regulations and consumers to create lighter, more fuel-efficient cars, the automotive industry has long been looking toward composite materials. Thermoplastics offer the strength and toughness required for many applications as well as the promise of reduced cycle times over thermosetting resins. In this study, a papermaking process was used to randomly and uniformly disperse matrix and reinforcement fibers in a non-woven, fibrous mat, which could then be molded into composite panels. A thermoplastic PEEK matrix was paired with a high-modulus, high-strength carbon fiber to produce the composite plates. Test blanks were then cut at multiple locations from these panels and subjected to visual inspection and flexural strength testing. Insights were then drawn from the comparisons giving specific attention to overall flexural strength properties. As a secondary objective, this papermaking process was evaluated as a viable production method for consistent, randomly oriented composite material.

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