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Effect of proportion of carbon fiber content and the dispersion of two fiber types on tensile and compressive properties of intra-layer hybrid composites

Ikbal, Md. Hasan, Wei, Li
carbon, carbon fibers, computer software, dispersions, epoxides, fiber content, glass, glass fibers, mechanical properties, scanning electron microscopy
Fourteen types of composite laminates—plain carbon/epoxy composite laminate, plain glass/epoxy composite laminate, and 12 carbon fiber–glass fiber/epoxy intra-layer hybrid composite laminates—were made with different relative proportions of the two fiber types and different dispersions. Tensile and compressive mechanical properties were tested and the results were simulated using the ABAQUS/Explicit commercial software package. The relative proportion of carbon fiber content largely affected the tensile and compressive mechanical properties and the so-called hybridization effect, and should be treated as one of the most crucial parameters. Though the degree of dispersion does not significantly affect mechanical performance, it certainly affects the failure modes of the composites. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that under both tensile and compressive loading, the low-elongation carbon fiber failed first, there was a stress drop in the stress–strain diagram, and then the materials continued extending; meaning that the rest of the load was carried by the remaining glass fibers. With a high dispersion of fiber types, composites tend to fail in a more controlled way, i.e. the curves have a plateau region at the end, and catastrophic failure is thereby avoided.