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Title: Tow level hybridisation for damage tolerant composites
Author: Selver, Erdem
ISNI:       0000 0004 5369 3082
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2014
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Fibre reinforced composites have higher specific strength and stiffness in comparison to metals. However, composites are susceptible to impact damage resulting in degradation of mechanical properties especially compression strength. Numerous studies have been conducted to improve the impact damage tolerance of composite laminates using modified resin systems, thermoplastic matrices, 3-D fibre architectures and through thickness reinforcement. This work is primarily focussed on incorporating non dissolvable polypropylene fibres (PP) in a thermoset matrix for improving the damage tolerance. Commingling and wrapping techniques have been investigated. PP fibres have been incorporated at the preform stage and hence do not adversely affect the viscosity of the resin during infusion. The healing effect of PP fibres on impact damaged composite laminates when heating is introduced has also been studied. High velocity impact test results showed that using commingled glass/PP fibres increased the total energy absorption of composite laminates by 20% due to the extensive plastic deformation of the PP fibres and through the use of toughening mechanisms in the form of resin cracking and delamination. It has been found that PP fibres provide protection to the glass fibres during low velocity impact loading, so fewer fibre breakages occur which lead to improved residual properties compared with pristine glass laminates. Compression after impact (CAI) tests showed that the residual strength as a percentage of non-impacted strength increased with percentage of PP fibres used. For impact of 20-50J, glass/epoxy laminates retained 32 45% of their compressive strength while laminates with 7%, 13% and 18% PP fibres retained 37 50%, 42-52% and 43-60% of their compressive strength, respectively. It was also observed that glass/PP woven laminates had better compressive strength retention (62 83%) than the glass/PP non-crimp laminates (37-50%). Composite laminates with high-modulus PP fibres (Innegra) exhibited higher residual compression strengths in comparison to laminates with lower modulus PP fibres. For 15-50J impact, glass/Innegra laminates showed residual compression strength of 50 63% in comparison to 39-60%; laminates without thermoplastic fibres exhibited 33 43% residual compression strength. Modulus of thermoplastic fibres appears to be important at higher energy levels. Healing of damaged commingled laminates produced a significant reduction in the damage area and a corresponding increase in CAI strength after heating at 200ºC; CAI strength of healed laminates is about 85% of undamaged samples in comparison to 60% for non-healed samples. A novel micro-wrapping technique, developed in this work, demonstrated significant reduction in damage area (46%) in comparison to the commingling method. Core wrapped laminates had higher residual strength (43-60%) than glass laminates (33-43%). Better PP distribution in core-wrapped composites helped to decrease the PP rich areas and the impact damage did not propagate easily in comparison to commingled composites. However due to the reduction in damage area, impact energy absorption in core wrapped laminates was lower than for commingled.
Supervisor: Potluri, Prasad ; Hogg, Paul Sponsor: Ministry of Turkish National Education
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Hybrid yarns ; Commingling ; Core-wrapping ; Impact tolerance ; Damage tolerance ; Composite healing ; Polypropylene ; High modulus polypropylene ; Glass fibre ; Non-crimp ; Low velocity impact ; High velocity impact ; Compression after impact