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  • Rapportserie FSCN - ISSN 1650-5387 2005:32FSCN-rapport R-05-60

    Sundsvall 2005

    Wood Fibre Composites with High Fibre Content

    FSCNFibre Science and Communication Network

    - ett skogsindustriellt forskningsprogram vid Mittuniversitetet

    Mattias Fredriksson and Sven Forsberg

  • WOOD FIBRE COMPOSITES WITH HIGH FIBRE CONTENT

    Mattias Fredriksson and Sven Forsberg FSCNFibreScienceandCommunicationNetwork,DepartmentofNaturalSciences,

    MidSwedenUniversity,SE85170Sundsvall,SwedenRapportserieFSCNISSN165053872005:32

    FSCNrapportR0560

    ABSTRACT

    Theaimofthisprojecthasbeentoexploreanideaconcerningtheproductionofthermoformingwoodfibrecomposites.Theyhavehighfibrecontentandareproducedbyapplyingpapermakingtechnology.Themainobjectiveshavebeentoanswerthefollowingquestions: Canthesewoodfibrecompositesbemadewithstandardpapermakingequipment? Can a composite produced in thisway competewith the presently available natural fibre

    composites?The results show that it is fully possible tomake compositeswith 80%wood fibres by usingpapermaking technology and that they can competewithor excelover commercialproducts intermsofstiffnessandtensilestrength.Keywords: Dimensional stabilization, Fibres, Latex, Mechanical properties, Natural fibres,

    Polymermatrixcomposites,Thermomechanicalpulpfibre,Woodcomposite

  • FSCN Fibre Science and Communication Network ISSN 1650-5387 2005:32 Internet: http.//www.miun.se/fscn FSCN rapport R-05-60 Page 3(41)

    TABLE OF CONTENTS

    Abstract ..............................................................................................................................1Table of contents ...............................................................................................................3 1. Introduction ..............................................................................................................4

    1.1 Composites............................................................................................................................ 4 1.2 Natural fibre composites........................................................................................................ 5 1.3 The processes to make composites...................................................................................... 6 1.4 Fibre properties ..................................................................................................................... 6 1.5 Matrix properties.................................................................................................................... 8 2. Materials....................................................................................................................9

    2.1 Fibres..................................................................................................................................... 9 2.2 Matrixes ................................................................................................................................. 9 3. Methods...................................................................................................................10

    3.1 Composite preparation ........................................................................................................ 10 3.1.1 Matrix application .............................................................................................................. 10 3.1.2 Pressing ............................................................................................................................ 10

    3.2 Tensile strength tests .......................................................................................................... 11 3.2.1 Composite and DFR strength ........................................................................................... 11 3.2.2 Polymer matrix strength .................................................................................................... 11 3.2.3 Composite strength at elevated temperatures.................................................................. 11

    3.3 Curing .................................................................................................................................. 12 3.4 Latex mixtures ..................................................................................................................... 12 3.5 Water uptake ....................................................................................................................... 12 4. Results and discussion .........................................................................................13

    4.1 Polymer matrix and fibre tensile strength ............................................................................ 13 4.2 Effects of press settings ...................................................................................................... 14

    4.2.1 Temperature...................................................................................................................... 16 4.2.2. Time .................................................................................................................................. 17 4.2.3 Pressure............................................................................................................................ 19 4.2.4 All variables....................................................................................................................... 20

    4.3 Curing .................................................................................................................................. 22 4.4 Latex mixtures ..................................................................................................................... 23 4.5 Effect of water uptake.......................................................................................................... 24

    4.5.1 Weight ............................................................................................................................... 25 4.5.2 Length ............................................................................................................................... 26 4.5.3 Thickness .......................................................................................................................... 27

    4.6 Composite tensile strength at elevated temperatures......................................................... 28 4.7 Effect of the fibre material.................................................................................................... 29 4.8 Shaping of the composite .................................................................................................... 29 5. Comparison to commercial products...................................................................30 6. Concluding remarks...............................................................................................31 7. References ..............................................................................................................32 Appendix 1 .......................................................................................................................35

    Experimental data.......................................................................................................................... 35

  • FSCN Fibre Science and Communication Network ISSN 1650-5387 2005:32 Internet: http.//www.miun.se/fscn FSCN rapport R-05-60 Page 4(41)

    1. INTRODUCTION

    Theuseofnaturalfibresasreinforcementincompositematerialsisveryold.Centuriesagowhennatural fibreswere the only available fibres theywereused, for example, togetherwith clay tomakebricks.Afterdecadesofhightechdevelopmentsofartificialfibressuchascarbon,glassfibresandKevlar, the focus has now interestingly been changed back to natural fibres.This renewedinterestinnaturalfibrecompositesreflectsitselfinseveralreportsandliteraturereviews16.The driving forces to use natural fibres as reinforcement material today are environmentalfriendliness,lighterweights,lowercostsandtheirinterestingstrengthproperties.Theseinterestingattributesmakenaturalfibrecompositesoneofthemostrapidlygrowingsegments(estimatedtoapproximately25%annuallyoverthepastseveralyears)inthecompositeindustry7. Rapidgrowth isalwaysastrongdrivingforceforresearchandindustrialdevelopment.TheMidSwedenUniversityissituatedinaregionwithstrongtraditionsinpapermakingandwoodfibres.Ifpapermakingtechnologyandwoodfibrescouldbeusedtoproducecompositesitcouldhaveaverypositiveinfluenceontheindustrialdevelopmentinourregion.Theaimofthisprojecthasbeentoexploreanideaconcerningtheproductionofthermoformingwoodfibrecompositeswithpapermakingtechnology.Themainobjectiveshavebeentoanswerthefollowingquestions:

    Canwoodfibrecompositesbemadewithstandardpapermakingequipment? Canthiscompositecompetewiththepresentlyavailablethermoplasticcomposites?

    After the introduction this report summarizes the initial testsmadeon this compositematerial.Focushasbeenonprocessing,tensilestrengthanddimensionstabilityofthecompositematerial.

    1.1 Composites Mostfibrecompositesaremadeofonlytwophases8,9,onecontinuousphasecalledthematrixandonedispersedphasecalled the reinforcement.Thematrixoftenconsistsofapolymer thatbindstogethereitheracontinuouswebordispersedshortfibreasloadcarryingelements.Inthisreportonly natural fibre composites are considered although some comparison with glass fibrecompositesaremade. There are four major issues to resolve in order to make a composite successfully and costefficiently:

    Theprocesstomakethecomposite Thefibreproperties Thematrixproperties Theadhesionbetweenfibreandmatrix

    Belowareourchoicesofprocess,fibresandmatrixespresented.Thequestionofadhesionbetweenfibresandmatrix isnotdealtwith in this report,but this isstudied inotherprojectsat

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