Discipline: Technology and Engineering
Subcategory: Civil/Mechanical/Manufacturing Engineering
Jasmine Tanthongsack - Tuskegee University
Co-Author(s): S M Kamrul Hasan and Mohammad K. Hossain, Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL
Green/bio-composites are being studied as leading alternatives to synthetic composites in the areas of biomedical, automobile, construction, and consumer goods. These composites are formed by a combination of biodegradable/non-biodegradable polymer matrix and natural fibers. The incorporation of nanoparticles in the polymer matrix improves physical, mechanical, viscoelastic, thermal, fire resistance as well as electrical properties of the resultant polymer individually as well as those the fiber reinforced polymer composites. In our study, untreated/treated jute fiber reinforced composites are manufactured using PLA and PHBV (PLA-PHBV) blend as a matrix modified without/with 0-3 wt% Closite NA+ nano-clay, in addition to using graphene nanoclay with the same measurements. The purpose of using polymer blend is to reduce the brittleness of PHBV and taking the advantage of higher mechanical strength of PHBV. PLA-PHBV blend was dissolved into chloroform at a ratio of 1:10 at room temperature and stirred by magnetic stirrer for 24 hours to prepare a homogeneous solution. In case of nano-phased composites, nanoclay was dispersed into the PLA-PHBV blend using ultrasonication technique followed by magnetic stirring as well as vacuum mixing. This nano-phased blend was then poured into a mold to prepare a thin film and dried at room temperature to evaporate chloroform. Dried films were then placed in the hot press and force was applied at 180°C for 2 minutes to prepare flat thin films of the composite. Jute/PLA-PHBV blend composites were produced by stacking films and fibers like a sandwich using the compression molding process applying 1.5 ton of pressure at 180°C for 20 minutes. Mechanical, morphological, and thermal tests will be performed on these composites according to ASTM standards to observe the effect of nanoclay on PLA-PHBV blend reinforced jute fiber composites.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): National Science Foundation (NSF)
Faculty Advisor: Mohammad K. Hossain, email@example.com
Role: I developed the composite panels and planned to perform mechanical and thermo-mechanical tests on the the panels.