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Special Issue "Composite Materials"

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A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944). This special issue belongs to the section "Advanced Composites".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2009)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Ralf Riedel (Website)

Institut für Materialwissenschaft, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Petersenstr. 23, 64287 Darmstadt, Germany

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Advanced composite materials are of particular interest in basic science as well as in applied research due to their high technological potential in the production of novel materials with tailor-made properties and with performance profiles far beyond those of the existing ones. The aim and scope of the research in this field is the development of materials with superior thermo mechanical, physical and chemical properties. The combination of different types of materials can lead to a great variety of composites, basically distinguished mainly by their constitution. Thus, the most prominent examples are denoted as polymer matrix composites (PMC), metal matrix composites (MMC) and ceramic matrix composites (CMC). In these cases, the composite comprises a matrix material in which one or more phases of another material are dispersed. The dispersed phase can be present in a variety of different morphologies such as fibers, whiskers, particles or platelets. Ideally, the resulting physical or chemical performance of the composite material is superior to that of the pure component phases. Depending on the size of the individual constituents, we distinguish between nano/nano-, nano/micro- and micro/micro-omposites.

In this special issue, novel trends related to synthesis and processing suitable for the production of advanced composites as well as the property profile of their derived novel materials are highlighted and discussed.

Prof. Dr. Ralf Riedel
Guest Editor

Keywords

  • synthesis, processing, structural and functional properties
  • theoretical studies (modeling and simulation)
  • applications

Related Special Issue

Published Papers (39 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessArticle Low Velocity Impact Behavior of Glass Filled Fiber-Reinforced Thermoplastic Engine Components
Materials 2010, 3(4), 2463-2473; doi:10.3390/ma3042463
Received: 19 February 2010 / Revised: 19 March 2010 / Accepted: 25 March 2010 / Published: 31 March 2010
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (711 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper concerns automotive parts located underneath the engine and in particular the engine oil pan. Classically made of stamped steel or cast aluminum, new developments have allowed the manufacture oil pans with polyamide 66 reinforced by 35% weight of short glass [...] Read more.
This paper concerns automotive parts located underneath the engine and in particular the engine oil pan. Classically made of stamped steel or cast aluminum, new developments have allowed the manufacture oil pans with polyamide 66 reinforced by 35% weight of short glass fiber. However, polyamides have some limitations and the most significant is their response to localized impact loading. The nature of the impact considered here is of a typical stone collected from the road and projected into the oil pan. Low velocity impact investigations were carried out using a gas gun and drop weight tower. The study shows that the design of the oil pan has a significant contribution in the shock absorption. In addition to the material properties, the geometry and the ribbing both cleverly combined, increase the impact resistance of the component significantly. Areas of oil pan design improvement have been identified and conclusions drawn. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Innovative Use and Characterization of Polymers for Timber-Related Construction
Materials 2010, 3(2), 1104-1124; doi:10.3390/ma3021104
Received: 17 December 2009 / Revised: 4 February 2010 / Accepted: 9 February 2010 / Published: 10 February 2010
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (537 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Timber gridshells have become a very popular, efficient, sustainable and beautiful structural application of timber. However, given the slender laths involved in this form of construction, there is concern over the durability of timber for this purpose, and Glass FRP (GFRP) laths [...] Read more.
Timber gridshells have become a very popular, efficient, sustainable and beautiful structural application of timber. However, given the slender laths involved in this form of construction, there is concern over the durability of timber for this purpose, and Glass FRP (GFRP) laths have been proposed as a possible substitution. This paper considers this possibility. It goes on to look at the possible use of Basalt FRP (BFRP) for the same purpose, from the perspective of its creep characteristics. It is shown that the use of GFRP gridshells is a viable form of construction, and that enhanced durability characteristics of BFRP could lead to their adoption for gridshells, given that the creep characteristics of basalt fibres presented here are comparable to those of glass fibres. An altogether different form of timber construction is that of joist-and-floorboard. In the UK, there are thousands of historic buildings which use this floor construction, and a sizeable proportion of this building stock now requires upgrade, strengthening and/or stiffening to allow these buildings to be fit for purpose into the future. This paper goes on to consider the possible use of Carbon FRP (CFRP) to strengthen and stiffen such timber floors. It is shown that such strengthening and stiffening is entirely feasible, offering the potential for greatly enhanced stiffness, in particular. Further, it is shown that mechanical shear connection between CFRP and timber is best conducted using perpendicular-positioned screws, rather than raked screws. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Effect of Microstructure Evolution on the Overall Response of Porous-Plastic Solids
Materials 2010, 3(2), 1031-1048; doi:10.3390/ma3021031
Received: 4 November 2009 / Revised: 26 January 2010 / Accepted: 3 February 2010 / Published: 4 February 2010
PDF Full-text (1414 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Ductile fracture is the macroscopic result of a micromechanical process consisting in void nucleation and growth to coalescence. While growing in size, voids also evolve in shape because of the non-uniform deformation field in the surrounding material; this shape evolution is either [...] Read more.
Ductile fracture is the macroscopic result of a micromechanical process consisting in void nucleation and growth to coalescence. While growing in size, voids also evolve in shape because of the non-uniform deformation field in the surrounding material; this shape evolution is either disregarded or approximately accounted for by constitutive laws for porous-plastic solids. To assess the effect of void distortion on the overall properties of a porous-plastic material prior to any coalescence-dominated event, we here present a micromechanical study in which the void-containing material is treated as a two-phase (matrix and inclusion) composite. A cylindrical representative volume element (RVE), featuring elliptic cross-section and containing a coaxial and confocal elliptic cylindrical cavity, is considered. In case of a matrix obeying J2 flow theory of plasticity, the overall yield domain and the evolution laws for the volume fraction and aspect ratio of the void are obtained. Under assigned strain histories, these theoretical findings are then compared to finite element unit-cell simulations, in order to assess the capability of the proposed results to track microstructure evolution. The improvements with respect to the customarily adopted Gurson’s model are also discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Preparation of Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotube/Amino-Terminated Ionic Liquid Arrays and Their Electrocatalysis towards Oxygen Reduction
Materials 2010, 3(1), 672-681; doi:10.3390/ma3010672
Received: 10 November 2009 / Revised: 20 January 2010 / Accepted: 22 January 2010 / Published: 25 January 2010
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (376 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Arrays of aligned multi-walled carbon nanotube-ionic liquid (MIL) were assembled on silicon wafers (Si-MIL). Formation of Si-MIL was confirmed by ATR-FTIR, AFM and Raman techniques. The electrochemical measurements indicated that Si-MIL showed good electrocatalysis towards oxygen reduction compared with MIL drop-cast on [...] Read more.
Arrays of aligned multi-walled carbon nanotube-ionic liquid (MIL) were assembled on silicon wafers (Si-MIL). Formation of Si-MIL was confirmed by ATR-FTIR, AFM and Raman techniques. The electrochemical measurements indicated that Si-MIL showed good electrocatalysis towards oxygen reduction compared with MIL drop-cast on a glassy carbon electrode. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Electrical and Electrorheological Properties of Alumina/Natural Rubber (STR XL) Composites
Materials 2010, 3(1), 656-671; doi:10.3390/ma3010656
Received: 18 December 2009 / Revised: 19 January 2010 / Accepted: 21 January 2010 / Published: 22 January 2010
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (874 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The electrorheological properties (ER) of natural rubber (XL)/alumina (Al2O3) composites were investigated in oscillatory shear mode under DC electrical field strengths between 0 to 2 kV/mm. SEM micrographs indicate a mean particle size of 9.873 ± 0.034 µm [...] Read more.
The electrorheological properties (ER) of natural rubber (XL)/alumina (Al2O3) composites were investigated in oscillatory shear mode under DC electrical field strengths between 0 to 2 kV/mm. SEM micrographs indicate a mean particle size of 9.873 ± 0.034 µm and particles that are moderately dispersed in the matrix. The XRD patterns indicate Al2O3 is of the β-phase polytype which possesses high ionic conductivity. The storage modulus (G′) of the composites, or the rigidity, increases by nearly two orders of magnitude, with variations in particle volume fraction and electrical field strength. The increase in the storage modulus is caused the ionic polarization of the alumina particles and the induced dipole moments set up in the natural rubber matrix. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Diode Laser Assisted Filament Winding of Thermoplastic Matrix Composites
Materials 2010, 3(1), 563-571; doi:10.3390/ma3010563
Received: 18 November 2009 / Revised: 7 January 2010 / Accepted: 18 January 2010 / Published: 20 January 2010
PDF Full-text (727 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A new consolidation method for the laser-assisted filament winding of thermoplastic prepregs is discussed: for the first time a diode laser is used, as well as long glass fiber reinforced polypropylene prepregs. A consolidation apparatus was built by means of a CNC [...] Read more.
A new consolidation method for the laser-assisted filament winding of thermoplastic prepregs is discussed: for the first time a diode laser is used, as well as long glass fiber reinforced polypropylene prepregs. A consolidation apparatus was built by means of a CNC motion table, a stepper motor and a simple tensioner. Preliminary tests were performed in a hoop winding configuration: only the winding speed was changed, and all the other process parameters (laser power, distance from the laser focus, consolidation force) were kept constant. Small wound rings with an internal diameter of 25 mm were produced and compression tests were carried out to evaluate the composite agglomeration in dependence of the winding speed. At lower winding speeds, a stronginterpenetration of adjacent layers was observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Figures

Open AccessArticle An Incremental Mori-Tanaka Homogenization Scheme for Finite Strain Thermoelastoplasticity of MMCs
Materials 2010, 3(1), 434-451; doi:10.3390/ma3010434
Received: 2 November 2009 / Revised: 22 December 2009 / Accepted: 24 December 2009 / Published: 13 January 2010
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (3850 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The present paper aims at computational simulations of particle reinforced Metal Matrix Composites as well as parts and specimens made thereof. An incremental Mori-Tanaka approach with isotropization of the matrix tangent operator is adopted. It is extended to account for large strains [...] Read more.
The present paper aims at computational simulations of particle reinforced Metal Matrix Composites as well as parts and specimens made thereof. An incremental Mori-Tanaka approach with isotropization of the matrix tangent operator is adopted. It is extended to account for large strains by means of co-rotational Cauchy stresses and logarithmic strains and is implemented into Finite Element Method software as constitutive material law. Periodic unit cell predictions in the finite strain regime are used to verify the analytical approach with respect to non-proportional loading scenarios and assumptions concerning finite strain localization. The response of parts made of Metal Matrix Composites is predicted by a multiscale approach based on these two micromechanical methods. Results for the mesoscopic stress and strain fields as well as the microfields are presented to demonstrate to capabilities of the developed methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Effect of SO2 Dry Deposition on Porous Dolomitic Limestones
Materials 2010, 3(1), 216-231; doi:10.3390/ma3010216
Received: 1 November 2009 / Revised: 30 December 2009 / Accepted: 4 January 2010 / Published: 7 January 2010
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (1130 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The present study is concerned with the assessment of the relative resistance of a monumental dolomitic limestone (Laspra – Spain) used as building material in stone monuments and submitted to artificial ageing by SO2 dry deposition in the presence of humidity. [...] Read more.
The present study is concerned with the assessment of the relative resistance of a monumental dolomitic limestone (Laspra – Spain) used as building material in stone monuments and submitted to artificial ageing by SO2 dry deposition in the presence of humidity. To investigate the protection efficiency of different polymeric coatings, three commercially available siloxane-based oligomers (Lotexan-N, Silres BS 290 and Tegosivin HL 100) and a newly synthesized hybrid nanocomposite with silsesquioxane units (TMSPMA) were used. A comparative assessment of the data obtained in this study underlines that a better limestone protection was obtained when treated with the hybrid nanocomposite with silsesquioxane units. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Figures

Open AccessArticle Improved Mechanical and Tribological Properties of Metal-Matrix Composites Dispersion-Strengthened by Nanoparticles
Materials 2010, 3(1), 97-109; doi:10.3390/ma3010097
Received: 27 October 2009 / Revised: 30 November 2009 / Accepted: 3 December 2009 / Published: 29 December 2009
Cited by 12 | PDF Full-text (1622 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Co- and Fe-based alloys produced by powder technology are being widely used as a matrix for diamond-containing composites in cutting, drilling, grinding pplications, etc. The severe service conditions demand that the mechanical and tribological properties of these alloys be improved. Development of [...] Read more.
Co- and Fe-based alloys produced by powder technology are being widely used as a matrix for diamond-containing composites in cutting, drilling, grinding pplications, etc. The severe service conditions demand that the mechanical and tribological properties of these alloys be improved. Development of metal-matrix composites (MMCs) and alloys reinforced with nanoparticles is a promising way to resolve this problem. In this work, we have investigated the effect of nano-sized WC, ZrO2, Al2O3, and Si3N4 additives on the properties of sintered dispersion-strengthened Co- and Fe-based MMCs. The results show an increase in the hardness (up to 10 HRB), bending strength (up to 50%), wear resistance (by a factor of 2–10) and a decrease in the friction coefficient (up to 4-fold) of the dispersion-strengthened materials. The use of designed alloys as a binder of cutting diamond tools gave a 4-fold increment in the service life, without reduction in their cutting speed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Feasibility of Using Multilayer Platelets as Toughening Agents
Materials 2010, 3(1), 1-8; doi:10.3390/ma3010001
Received: 22 October 2009 / Revised: 21 December 2009 / Accepted: 22 December 2009 / Published: 24 December 2009
PDF Full-text (567 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
It is known that the toughness of brittle ceramics can be improved significantly with the addition of hard platelets. In the present study, platelet-shape multilayer ceramic laminates are utilized as a toughening agent for alumina ceramics. They are prepared by laminating the [...] Read more.
It is known that the toughness of brittle ceramics can be improved significantly with the addition of hard platelets. In the present study, platelet-shape multilayer ceramic laminates are utilized as a toughening agent for alumina ceramics. They are prepared by laminating the BaTiO3-based ceramic tapes. Although the elastic modulus of the BaTiO3-based platelets is lower than that of the alumina matrix, and the platelets are also reactive to alumina at elevated temperatures, the weak platelets are found to exhibit the ability to deflect major matrix cracks by forming a large number of microcrack branches within the platelets, thus achieving the desired toughening effect. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Inorganic Polymer Matrix Composite Strength Related to Interface Condition
Materials 2009, 2(4), 2216-2227; doi:10.3390/ma2042216
Received: 31 October 2009 / Revised: 29 November 2009 / Accepted: 3 December 2009 / Published: 7 December 2009
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (874 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Resin transfer molding of an inorganic polymer binder was successfully demonstrated in the preparation of ceramic fiber reinforced engine exhaust valves. Unfortunately, in the preliminary processing trials, the resulting composite valves were too brittle for in-engine evaluation. To address this limited toughness, [...] Read more.
Resin transfer molding of an inorganic polymer binder was successfully demonstrated in the preparation of ceramic fiber reinforced engine exhaust valves. Unfortunately, in the preliminary processing trials, the resulting composite valves were too brittle for in-engine evaluation. To address this limited toughness, the effectiveness of a modified fiber-matrix interface is investigated through the use of carbon as a model material fiber coating. After sequential heat treatments composites molded from uncoated and carbon coated fibers are compared using room temperature 3-point bend testing. Carbon coated Nextel fiber reinforced geopolymer composites demonstrated a 50% improvement in strength, versus that of the uncoated fiber reinforced composites, after the 250 °C postcure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle The Effect of Evolving Damage on the Finite Strain Response of Inelastic and Viscoelastic Composites
Materials 2009, 2(4), 1858-1894; doi:10.3390/ma2041858
Received: 14 October 2009 / Revised: 15 November 2009 / Accepted: 17 November 2009 / Published: 18 November 2009
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (402 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A finite strain micromechanical model is generalized in order to incorporate the effect of evolving damage in the metallic and polymeric phases of unidirectional compostes. As a result, it is possible to predict the response of composites with ductile and brittle phases [...] Read more.
A finite strain micromechanical model is generalized in order to incorporate the effect of evolving damage in the metallic and polymeric phases of unidirectional compostes. As a result, it is possible to predict the response of composites with ductile and brittle phases undergoing large coupled inelastic-damage and viscoelastic-damage deformations, respectively. For inelastic composites, both finite strain elastoplastic (time-independent) and viscoplastic (time-dependent) behaviors are considered. The ductile phase exhibits initially a hyperelastic behavior which is followed by an inelastic one, and its analysis is based on the multiplicative split of its deformation gradient into elastic and inelastic parts. The embedded damage mechanisms and their evolutions are based on Gurson’s (which is suitable for the modeling of porous materials) and Lemaitre’s finite strain models. Similarly, the polymeric phase exhibits large viscoelastic deformations in which the damage evolves according to a suitable evolution law that depends on the amount of accumulated deformation. Evolving damage in hyperelastic materials can be analyzed as a special case by neglecting the viscous effects. The micromechanical analysis is based on the homogenization technique for periodic multiphase materials, which establishes the strong form of the Lagrangian equilibrium equations. These equations are implemented together with the interfacial and periodic boundary conditions, in conjunction with the current tangent tensor of the phase. As a result, the instantaneous strain concentration tensor that relates the local deformation gradient of the phase to the externally applied deformation gradient is established. This provides also the instantaneous effective stiffness tangent tensor of the composite as well as its current response. Results are given that exhibit the effect of damage on the initial yield surfaces, response and possible failure of the composite. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Present State of the Art of Composite Fabric Forming: Geometrical and Mechanical Approaches
Materials 2009, 2(4), 1835-1857; doi:10.3390/ma2041835
Received: 21 October 2009 / Revised: 5 November 2009 / Accepted: 12 November 2009 / Published: 17 November 2009
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (1760 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Continuous fibre reinforced composites are now firmly established engineering materials for the manufacture of components in the automotive and aerospace industries. In this respect, composite fabrics provide flexibility in the design manufacture. The ability to define the ply shapes and material orientation [...] Read more.
Continuous fibre reinforced composites are now firmly established engineering materials for the manufacture of components in the automotive and aerospace industries. In this respect, composite fabrics provide flexibility in the design manufacture. The ability to define the ply shapes and material orientation has allowed engineers to optimize the composite properties of the parts. The formulation of new numerical models for the simulation of the composite forming processes must allow for reduction in the delay in manufacturing and an optimization of costs in an integrated design approach. We propose two approaches to simulate the deformation of woven fabrics: geometrical and mechanical approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Hydroxyapatite/MCM-41 and SBA-15 Nano-Composites: Preparation, Characterization and Applications
Materials 2009, 2(4), 1508-1519; doi:10.3390/ma2041508
Received: 29 July 2009 / Revised: 28 September 2009 / Accepted: 29 September 2009 / Published: 30 September 2009
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (995 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Composites of hydroxyapatite (HaP) and highly ordered large pore mesoporous silica molecular sieves such as, Al-SBA-15 and Al-MCM-41 (denoted as SBA-15 and MCM-41. respectively) were developed, characterized by XRD, BET, FTIR, HRTEM and NMR-MAS, and applied to fluoride retention from contaminated water. [...] Read more.
Composites of hydroxyapatite (HaP) and highly ordered large pore mesoporous silica molecular sieves such as, Al-SBA-15 and Al-MCM-41 (denoted as SBA-15 and MCM-41. respectively) were developed, characterized by XRD, BET, FTIR, HRTEM and NMR-MAS, and applied to fluoride retention from contaminated water. The proposed procedure by a new route to prepare the HaP/SBA-15 and HaP/MCM-41, composites generates materials with aluminum only in tetrahedral coordination, according to the 27Al NMR-MAS results. Free OH- groups of HaP nanocrystals, within the hosts, allowed high capacity fluoride retention. The activity of fluoride retention using HaP/MCM-41 or HaP/SBA-15 was 1-2 orders of magnitude greater, respectively, than with pure HaP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
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Open AccessArticle Two-Way Bending Properties of Shape Memory Composite with SMA and SMP
Materials 2009, 2(3), 1180-1192; doi:10.3390/ma2031180
Received: 16 July 2009 / Revised: 20 August 2009 / Accepted: 24 August 2009 / Published: 1 September 2009
Cited by 18 | PDF Full-text (413 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A shape memory composite (SMC) was fabricated with a shape memory alloy (SMA) and a shape memory polymer (SMP), and its two-way bending deformation and recovery force were investigated. The results obtained can be summarized as follows: (1) two kinds of SMA [...] Read more.
A shape memory composite (SMC) was fabricated with a shape memory alloy (SMA) and a shape memory polymer (SMP), and its two-way bending deformation and recovery force were investigated. The results obtained can be summarized as follows: (1) two kinds of SMA tapes which show the shape memory effect (SME) and superelasticity (SE) were heat-treated to memorize the round shape. The shape-memorized round SMA tapes were arranged facing in the opposite directions and were sandwiched between the SMP sheets. The SMC belt can be fabricated by using the appropriate factors: the number of SMP sheets, the pressing force, the heating temperature and the hold time. (2) The twoway bending deformation with an angle of 56 degrees in the fabricated SMC belt is observed based on the SME and SE of the SMA tapes during heating and cooling. (3) If the SMC belt is heated and cooled by keeping the bent form, the recovery force increases during heating and degreases during cooling based on the two-way properties of the SMC. (4) The development and application of high-functional SMCs are expected by the combination of the SMA and the SMP with various kinds of phase transformation temperatures, volume fractions, configurations and heating-cooling rates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Advances for the Topographic Characterisation of SMC Materials
Materials 2009, 2(3), 1084-1103; doi:10.3390/ma2031084
Received: 15 July 2009 / Revised: 20 August 2009 / Accepted: 26 August 2009 / Published: 27 August 2009
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1460 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
For a comprehensive study of Sheet Moulding Compound (SMC) surfaces, topographical data obtained by a contact-free optical method (chromatic aberration confocal imaging) were systematically acquired to characterise these surfaces with regard to their statistical, functional and volumetrical properties. Optimal sampling conditions (cut-off [...] Read more.
For a comprehensive study of Sheet Moulding Compound (SMC) surfaces, topographical data obtained by a contact-free optical method (chromatic aberration confocal imaging) were systematically acquired to characterise these surfaces with regard to their statistical, functional and volumetrical properties. Optimal sampling conditions (cut-off length and resolution) were obtained by a topographical-statistical procedure proposed in the present work. By using different length scales specific morphologies due to the influence of moulding conditions, metallic mould topography, glass fibre content and glass fibre orientation can be characterized. The aim of this study is to suggest a systematic topographical characterization procedure for composite materials in order to study and recognize the influence of production conditions on their surface quality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Properties of Strandboard Panels Manufactured from Eastern Redcedar
Materials 2009, 2(3), 926-933; doi:10.3390/ma2030926
Received: 5 July 2009 / Revised: 23 July 2009 / Accepted: 13 August 2009 / Published: 14 August 2009
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (243 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study evaluated physical and mechanical properties of experimental strandboard panels with random flake alignment manufactured from eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana L.) logs. Panels were made at two density levels of 0.65 g/cm3 and 0.78 g/cm3 using phenol formaldehyde [...] Read more.
This study evaluated physical and mechanical properties of experimental strandboard panels with random flake alignment manufactured from eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana L.) logs. Panels were made at two density levels of 0.65 g/cm3 and 0.78 g/cm3 using phenol formaldehyde adhesive applied at a rate of 8%. Mechanical properties including modulus of elasticity and modulus of rupture, and internal bond strength of the panels in addition to their thickness swelling characteristics were evaluated. As expected, mechanical properties of the samples improved with increasing panel density. Thickness swelling of the samples for 2- and 24-h water soaking test ranged from 6.32% to 18.41%. Both physical and mechanical properties of the panels showed acceptable results, comparable to those found in past studies using other species to manufacture similar types of product. Based on initial findings of this study it appears that eastern redcedar, which is an under-utilized invasive resource, has potential as a raw material for structural panel manufacture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessArticle Shear Strength of Exterior Plywood Panels Pressed at Low Temperature
Materials 2009, 2(3), 876-882; doi:10.3390/ma2030876
Received: 5 July 2009 / Revised: 21 July 2009 / Accepted: 3 August 2009 / Published: 4 August 2009
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (103 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Plywood manufactured from thin veneer sheets of different species is one of the most traditional structural composite panels. The objective of this study was to produce experimental plywood panels using a temperature of 100 °C, which is 10 to 30% lower than [...] Read more.
Plywood manufactured from thin veneer sheets of different species is one of the most traditional structural composite panels. The objective of this study was to produce experimental plywood panels using a temperature of 100 °C, which is 10 to 30% lower than typical press temperature of plywood manufacture. It was determined that shear strength characteristics of the samples were not adversely influenced as function of reduced press temperature. This process can be considered as a promising way to save substantial amounts of energy during pressing processes, which results in a major reduction in overall production costs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)

Review

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Open AccessReview Silicone Resin Applications for Ceramic Precursors and Composites
Materials 2010, 3(6), 3518-3536; doi:10.3390/ma3063518
Received: 30 April 2010 / Accepted: 24 May 2010 / Published: 2 June 2010
Cited by 19 | PDF Full-text (1745 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This article reviews the applications of silicone resins as ceramic precursors. The historical background of silicone synthesis chemistry is introduced to explain the production costs and supply availability of various silicones. Thermal degradation processes of silicones are classified in terms of the [...] Read more.
This article reviews the applications of silicone resins as ceramic precursors. The historical background of silicone synthesis chemistry is introduced to explain the production costs and supply availability of various silicones. Thermal degradation processes of silicones are classified in terms of the main chain structure and cyclic oligomer expulsion process, which determine the resulting ceramic yield and the chemical composition. The high temperature decomposition of Si-O-C beyond 1,400 °C in an inert atmosphere and formation of a protective silica layer on material surfaces beyond 1,200 °C in an oxidative atmosphere are discussed from the viewpoints of the wide chemical composition of the Si-O-C materials. Applications of the resins for binding agents, as starting materials for porous ceramics, matrix sources with impregnation, fiber spinning and ceramic adhesions are introduced. The recent development of the process of filler or cross-linking agent additions to resin compounds is also introduced. Such resin compounds are useful for obtaining thick coatings, MEMS parts and bulk ceramics, which are difficult to obtain by pyrolysis of simple organometallic precursors without additives. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Preparation of Dispersed Platinum Nanoparticles on a Carbon Nanostructured Surface Using Supercritical Fluid Chemical Deposition
Materials 2010, 3(3), 1559-1572; doi:10.3390/ma3031559
Received: 31 October 2009 / Revised: 30 December 2009 / Accepted: 18 January 2010 / Published: 3 March 2010
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (6876 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
We have developed a method of forming platinum (Pt) nanoparticles using a metal organic chemical fluid deposition (MOCFD) process employing a supercritical fluid (SCF), and have demonstrated the synthesis of dispersed Pt nanoparticles on the surfaces of carbon nanowalls (CNWs), two-dimensional carbon [...] Read more.
We have developed a method of forming platinum (Pt) nanoparticles using a metal organic chemical fluid deposition (MOCFD) process employing a supercritical fluid (SCF), and have demonstrated the synthesis of dispersed Pt nanoparticles on the surfaces of carbon nanowalls (CNWs), two-dimensional carbon nanostructures, and carbon nanotubes (CNTs). By using SCF-MOCFD with supercritical carbon dioxide as a solvent of metal-organic compounds, highly dispersed Pt nanoparticles of 2 nm diameter were deposited on the entire surface of CNWs and CNTs. The SCF-MOCFD process proved to be effective for the synthesis of Pt nanoparticles on the entire surface of intricate carbon nanostructures with narrow interspaces. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Electrically and Thermally Conducting Nanocomposites for Electronic Applications
Materials 2010, 3(2), 1478-1496; doi:10.3390/ma3021478
Received: 10 January 2010 / Revised: 24 February 2010 / Accepted: 24 February 2010 / Published: 25 February 2010
Cited by 18 | PDF Full-text (512 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Nanocomposites made up of polymer matrices and carbon nanotubes are a class of advanced materials with great application potential in electronics packaging. Nanocomposites with carbon nanotubes as fillers have been designed with the aim of exploiting the high thermal, electrical and mechanical [...] Read more.
Nanocomposites made up of polymer matrices and carbon nanotubes are a class of advanced materials with great application potential in electronics packaging. Nanocomposites with carbon nanotubes as fillers have been designed with the aim of exploiting the high thermal, electrical and mechanical properties characteristic of carbon nanotubes. Heat dissipation in electronic devices requires interface materials with high thermal conductivity. Here, current developments and challenges in the application of nanotubes as fillers in polymer matrices are explored. The blending together of nanotubes and polymers result in what are known as nanocomposites. Among the most pressing current issues related to nanocomposite fabrication are (i) dispersion of carbon nanotubes in the polymer host, (ii) carbon nanotube-polymer interaction and the nature of the interface, and (iii) alignment of carbon nanotubes in a polymer matrix. These issues are believed to be directly related to the electrical and thermal performance of nanocomposites. The recent progress in the fabrication of nanocomposites with carbon nanotubes as fillers and their potential application in electronics packaging as thermal interface materials is also reported. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Microstructural Characterisation and Wear Behaviour of Diamond Composite Materials
Materials 2010, 3(2), 1390-1419; doi:10.3390/ma3021390
Received: 10 January 2010 / Accepted: 22 February 2010 / Published: 24 February 2010
Cited by 18 | PDF Full-text (2762 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Since the initial research leading to the production of diamond composite materials, there have been several important developments leading to significant improvements in the properties of these superhard composite materials. Apart from the fact that diamonds, whether originating from natural resources or [...] Read more.
Since the initial research leading to the production of diamond composite materials, there have been several important developments leading to significant improvements in the properties of these superhard composite materials. Apart from the fact that diamonds, whether originating from natural resources or synthesised commercially, are the hardest and most wear-resistant materials commonly available, there are other mechanical properties that limit their industrial application. These include the low fracture toughness and low impact strength of diamond. By incorporating a range of binder phases into the sintering production process of these composites, these critically important properties have been radically improved. These new composites can withstand much higher operating temperatures without markedly reducing their strength and wear resistance. Further innovative steps are now being made to improve the properties of diamond composites by reducing grain and particle sizes into the nano range. This review will cover recent developments in diamond composite materials with special emphasis on microstructural characterisation. The results of such studies should assist in the design of new, innovative diamond tools as well as leading to radical improvements in the productivity of cutting, drilling and sawing operations in the exploration, mining, civil construction and manufacturing industries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Semiconductor Nanocrystals Hybridized with Functional Ligands: New Composite Materials with Tunable Properties
Materials 2010, 3(1), 614-637; doi:10.3390/ma3010614
Received: 31 December 2009 / Accepted: 21 January 2010 / Published: 22 January 2010
Cited by 15 | PDF Full-text (516 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Semiconductor nanocrystals hybridized with functional ligands represent an important new class of composite nanomaterials. The development of these new nanoscale building blocks has intensified over the past few years and offer significant advantages in a wide array of applications. Functional ligands allow [...] Read more.
Semiconductor nanocrystals hybridized with functional ligands represent an important new class of composite nanomaterials. The development of these new nanoscale building blocks has intensified over the past few years and offer significant advantages in a wide array of applications. Functional ligands allow for incorporation of nanocrystals into areas where their unique photophysics can be exploited. Energy and charge transfer between the ligands and the nanocrystal also result in enhanced physical properties that can be tuned by the choice of ligand architecture. Here, progress in the development and applications involving this new class of composite materials will be discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
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Open AccessReview Geometrical Description in Binary Composites and Spectral Density Representation
Materials 2010, 3(1), 585-613; doi:10.3390/ma3010585
Received: 20 November 2009 / Revised: 18 January 2010 / Accepted: 19 January 2010 / Published: 21 January 2010
Cited by 14 | PDF Full-text (640 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this review, the dielectric permittivity of dielectric mixtures is discussed in view of the spectral density representation method. A distinct representation is derived for predicting the dielectric properties, permittivities ε, of mixtures. The presentation of the dielectric properties is based [...] Read more.
In this review, the dielectric permittivity of dielectric mixtures is discussed in view of the spectral density representation method. A distinct representation is derived for predicting the dielectric properties, permittivities ε, of mixtures. The presentation of the dielectric properties is based on a scaled permittivity approach, ξ = (εeεm)(εi εm)−1, where the subscripts e, m and i denote the dielectric permittivities of the effective, matrix and inclusion media, respectively [Tuncer, E. J. Phys.: Condens. Matter 2005, 17, L125]. This novel representation transforms the spectral density formalism to a form similar to the distribution of relaxation times method of dielectric relaxation. Consequently, I propose that any dielectric relaxation formula, i.e., the Havriliak-Negami empirical dielectric relaxation expression, can be adopted as a scaled permittivity. The presented scaled permittivity representation has potential to be improved and implemented into the existing data analyzing routines for dielectric relaxation; however, the information to extract would be the topological/morphological description in mixtures. To arrive at the description, one needs to know the dielectric properties of the constituents and the composite prior to the spectral analysis. To illustrate the strength of the representation and confirm the proposed hypothesis, the Landau-Lifshitz/Looyenga (LLL) [Looyenga, H. Physica 1965, 31, 401] expression is selected. The structural information of a mixture obeying LLL is extracted for different volume fractions of phases. Both an in-house computational tool based on the Monte Carlo method to solve inverse integral transforms and the proposed empirical scaled permittivity expression are employed to estimate the spectral density function of the LLL expression. The estimated spectral functions for mixtures with different inclusion concentration compositions show similarities; they are composed of a couple of bell-shaped distributions, with coinciding peak locations but different heights. It is speculated that the coincidence in the peak locations is an absolute illustration of the self-similar fractal nature of the mixture topology (structure) created with the LLL expression. Consequently, the spectra are not altered significantly with increased filler concentration level—they exhibit a self-similar spectral density function for different concentration levels. Last but not least, the estimated percolation strengths also confirm the fractal nature of the systems characterized by the LLL mixture expression. It is concluded that the LLL expression is suitable for complex composite systems that have hierarchical order in their structure. These observations confirm the finding in the literature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Synthetic Fabrication of Nanoscale MoS2-Based Transition Metal Sulfides
Materials 2010, 3(1), 401-433; doi:10.3390/ma3010401
Received: 9 December 2009 / Accepted: 12 January 2010 / Published: 12 January 2010
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (873 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Transition metal sulfides are scientifically and technologically important materials. This review summarizes recent progress on the synthetic fabrication of transition metal sulfides nanocrystals with controlled shape, size, and surface functionality. Special attention is paid to the case of MoS2 nanoparticles, where [...] Read more.
Transition metal sulfides are scientifically and technologically important materials. This review summarizes recent progress on the synthetic fabrication of transition metal sulfides nanocrystals with controlled shape, size, and surface functionality. Special attention is paid to the case of MoS2 nanoparticles, where organic (surfactant, polymer), inorganic (support, promoter, doping) compounds and intercalation chemistry are applied. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Friction Stir Processing of Particle Reinforced Composite Materials
Materials 2010, 3(1), 329-350; doi:10.3390/ma3010329
Received: 29 October 2009 / Revised: 14 December 2009 / Accepted: 8 January 2010 / Published: 11 January 2010
Cited by 20 | PDF Full-text (8971 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The objective of this article is to provide a review of friction stir processing (FSP) technology and its application for microstructure modification of particle reinforced composite materials. The main focus of FSP was on aluminum based alloys and composites. Recently, many researchers [...] Read more.
The objective of this article is to provide a review of friction stir processing (FSP) technology and its application for microstructure modification of particle reinforced composite materials. The main focus of FSP was on aluminum based alloys and composites. Recently, many researchers have investigated this technology for treating other alloys and materials including stainless steels, magnesium, titanium, and copper. It is shown that FSP technology is very effective in microstructure modification of reinforced metal matrix composite materials. FSP has also been used in the processing and structure modification of polymeric composite materials. Compared with other manufacturing processes, friction stir processing has the advantage of reducing distortion and defects in materials. The layout of this paper is as follows. The friction stir processing technology will be presented first. Then, the application of this technology in manufacturing and structure modification of particle reinforced composite materials will be introduced. Future application of friction stir processing in energy field, for example, for vanadium alloy and composites will be discussed. Finally, the challenges for improving friction stir processing technology will be mentioned. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview On Micro-Macro Transition in Non-Linear Mechanics
Materials 2010, 3(1), 296-317; doi:10.3390/ma3010296
Received: 31 October 2009 / Revised: 10 December 2009 / Accepted: 14 December 2009 / Published: 8 January 2010
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (197 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper is devoted to the description of the general relationships between microscopic and macroscopic mechanical quantities in non-linear mechanics. From a thermodynamical viewpoint, it is only necessary to know the two macroscopic potentials (macroscopic free energy and macroscopic potential of dissipation) [...] Read more.
This paper is devoted to the description of the general relationships between microscopic and macroscopic mechanical quantities in non-linear mechanics. From a thermodynamical viewpoint, it is only necessary to know the two macroscopic potentials (macroscopic free energy and macroscopic potential of dissipation) to describe the state of the body and its quasistatic evolution. These global potentials are the averages of the local ones. We point out some particular cases of non-linearities, especially the case of damaged materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Interface Reactions and Synthetic Reaction of Composite Systems
Materials 2010, 3(1), 264-295; doi:10.3390/ma3010264
Received: 11 November 2009 / Revised: 29 December 2009 / Accepted: 4 January 2010 / Published: 8 January 2010
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2752 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Interface reactions in composite systems often determine their overall properties, since product phases usually formed at interfaces during composite fabrication processing make up a large portion of the composites. Since most composite materials represent a ternary or higher order materials system, many [...] Read more.
Interface reactions in composite systems often determine their overall properties, since product phases usually formed at interfaces during composite fabrication processing make up a large portion of the composites. Since most composite materials represent a ternary or higher order materials system, many studies have focused on analyses of diffusion phenomena and kinetics in multicomponent systems. However, the understanding of the kinetic behavior increases the complexity, since the kinetics of each component during interdiffusion reactions need to be defined for interpreting composite behaviors. From this standpoint, it is important to clarify the interface reactions for producing compatible interfaces with desired product phases. A thermodynamic evaluation such as a chemical potential of involving components can provide an understanding of the diffusion reactions, which govern diffusion pathways and product phase formation. A strategic approach for designing compatible interfaces is discussed in terms of chemical potential diagrams and interface morphology, with some material examples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Functionalization of Artificial Freestanding Composite Nanomembranes
Materials 2010, 3(1), 165-200; doi:10.3390/ma3010165
Received: 30 October 2009 / Revised: 4 January 2010 / Accepted: 6 January 2010 / Published: 7 January 2010
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (3848 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Artificial nanomembranes may be defined as synthetic freestanding structures with a thickness below 100 nm and a very large aspect ratio, of at least a few orders of magnitude. Being quasi-2D, they exhibit a host of unusual properties useful for various applications [...] Read more.
Artificial nanomembranes may be defined as synthetic freestanding structures with a thickness below 100 nm and a very large aspect ratio, of at least a few orders of magnitude. Being quasi-2D, they exhibit a host of unusual properties useful for various applications in energy harvesting, sensing, optics, plasmonics, biomedicine, etc. We review the main approaches to nanomembrane functionalization through nanocompositing, which ensures performance far superior to that of simple nanomembranes. These approaches include lamination (stacking of nanometer-thin strata of different materials), introduction of nanoparticle fillers into the nanomembrane scaffold, nanomembrane surface sculpting and modification through patterning (including formation of nanohole arrays and introduction of ion channels similar in function to those in biological nanomembranes). We also present some of our original results related to functionalization of metal matrix composite nanomembranes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
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Open AccessReview A Novel Fabrication Method for Functionally Graded Materials under Centrifugal Force: The Centrifugal Mixed-Powder Method
Materials 2009, 2(4), 2510-2525; doi:10.3390/ma2042510
Received: 10 November 2009 / Revised: 14 December 2009 / Accepted: 18 December 2009 / Published: 23 December 2009
Cited by 26 | PDF Full-text (4636 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
One of the fabrication methods for functionally graded materials (FGMs) is a centrifugal solid-particle method, which is an application of the centrifugal casting technique. However, it is the difficult to fabricate FGMs containing nano-particles by the centrifugal solid-particle method. Recently, we proposed [...] Read more.
One of the fabrication methods for functionally graded materials (FGMs) is a centrifugal solid-particle method, which is an application of the centrifugal casting technique. However, it is the difficult to fabricate FGMs containing nano-particles by the centrifugal solid-particle method. Recently, we proposed a novel fabrication method, which we have named the centrifugal mixed-powder method, by which we can obtain FGMs containing nano-particles. Using this processing method, Cu-based FGMs containing SiC particles and Al-based FGMs containing TiO2 nano-particles on their surfaces have been fabricated. In this article, the microstructure and mechanical property of Cu/SiC and Al/TiO2 FGMs, fabricated by the centrifugal mixed-powder method are reviewed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Thermal Conductivity of Diamond Composites
Materials 2009, 2(4), 2467-2495; doi:10.3390/ma2042467
Received: 1 November 2009 / Revised: 16 December 2009 / Accepted: 17 December 2009 / Published: 21 December 2009
Cited by 50 | PDF Full-text (1608 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A major problem challenging specialists in present-day materials sciences is the development of compact, cheap to fabricate heat sinks for electronic devices, primarily for computer processors, semiconductor lasers, high-power microchips, and electronics components. The materials currently used for heat sinks of such [...] Read more.
A major problem challenging specialists in present-day materials sciences is the development of compact, cheap to fabricate heat sinks for electronic devices, primarily for computer processors, semiconductor lasers, high-power microchips, and electronics components. The materials currently used for heat sinks of such devices are aluminum and copper, with thermal conductivities of about 250 W/(m·K) and 400 W/(m·K), respectively. Significantly, the thermal expansion coefficient of metals differs markedly from those of the materials employed in semiconductor electronics (mostly silicon); one should add here the low electrical resistivity metals possess. By contrast, natural single-crystal diamond is known to feature the highest thermal conductivity of all the bulk materials studied thus far, as high as 2,200 W/(m·K). Needless to say, it cannot be applied in heat removal technology because of high cost. Recently, SiC- and AlN-based ceramics have started enjoying wide use as heat sink materials; the thermal conductivity of such composites, however, is inferior to that of metals by nearly a factor two. This prompts a challenging scientific problem to develop diamond-based composites with thermal characteristics superior to those of aluminum and copper, adjustable thermal expansion coefficient, low electrical conductivity and a moderate cost, below that of the natural single-crystal diamond. The present review addresses this problem and appraises the results reached by now in studying the possibility of developing composites in diamond-containing systems with a view of obtaining materials with a high thermal conductivity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Fabrication and Properties of Carbon Fibers
Materials 2009, 2(4), 2369-2403; doi:10.3390/ma2042369
Received: 30 October 2009 / Revised: 8 December 2009 / Accepted: 14 December 2009 / Published: 16 December 2009
Cited by 119 | PDF Full-text (405 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper reviews the research and development activities conducted over the past few decades on carbon fibers. The two most important precursors in the carbon fiber industry are polyacrylonitrile (PAN) and mesophase pitch (MP). The structure and composition of the precursor affect [...] Read more.
This paper reviews the research and development activities conducted over the past few decades on carbon fibers. The two most important precursors in the carbon fiber industry are polyacrylonitrile (PAN) and mesophase pitch (MP). The structure and composition of the precursor affect the properties of the resultant carbon fibers significantly. Although the essential processes for carbon fiber production are similar, different precursors require different processing conditions in order to achieve improved performance. The research efforts on process optimization are discussed in this review. The review also attempts to cover the research on other precursor materials developed mainly for the purpose of cost reduction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Intercalated Nanocomposites Based on High-Temperature Superconducting Ceramics and Their Properties
Materials 2009, 2(4), 2154-2187; doi:10.3390/ma2042154
Received: 15 October 2009 / Revised: 18 November 2009 / Accepted: 30 November 2009 / Published: 2 December 2009
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (894 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
High temperature superconducting (SC) nanocomposites based on SC ceramics and various polymeric binders were prepared. Regardless of the size of the ceramics’ grains, the increase of their amount leads to an increase of resistance to rupture and modulus and a decrease in [...] Read more.
High temperature superconducting (SC) nanocomposites based on SC ceramics and various polymeric binders were prepared. Regardless of the size of the ceramics’ grains, the increase of their amount leads to an increase of resistance to rupture and modulus and a decrease in limiting deformation, whereas an increase in the average ceramic grain size worsens resistance properties. The SC, thermo-chemical, mechanical and dynamic-mechanical properties of the samples were investigated. Superconducting properties of the polymer ceramic nanocomposites are explained by intercalation of macromolecule fragments into the interstitial layer of the ceramics’ grains. This phenomenon leads to a change in the morphological structure of the superconducting nanocomposites. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
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Open AccessReview Fracture Toughness of Polypropylene-Based Particulate Composites
Materials 2009, 2(4), 2046-2094; doi:10.3390/ma2042046
Received: 27 October 2009 / Revised: 24 November 2009 / Accepted: 27 November 2009 / Published: 30 November 2009
Cited by 17 | PDF Full-text (1561 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The fracture behaviour of polymers is strongly affected by the addition of rigid particles. Several features of the particles have a decisive influence on the values of the fracture toughness: shape and size, chemical nature, surface nature, concentration by volume, and orientation. [...] Read more.
The fracture behaviour of polymers is strongly affected by the addition of rigid particles. Several features of the particles have a decisive influence on the values of the fracture toughness: shape and size, chemical nature, surface nature, concentration by volume, and orientation. Among those of thermoplastic matrix, polypropylene (PP) composites are the most industrially employed for many different application fields. Here, a review on the fracture behaviour of PP-based particulate composites is carried out, considering the basic topics and experimental techniques of Fracture Mechanics, the mechanisms of deformation and fracture, and values of fracture toughness for different PP composites prepared with different particle scale size, either micrometric or nanometric. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
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Open AccessReview Dielectric and Elastic Characterization of Nonlinear Heterogeneous Materials
Materials 2009, 2(4), 1417-1479; doi:10.3390/ma2041417
Received: 28 July 2009 / Revised: 5 September 2009 / Accepted: 29 September 2009 / Published: 30 September 2009
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (1736 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This review paper deals with the dielectric and elastic characterization of composite materials constituted by dispersions of nonlinear inclusions embedded in a linear matrix. The dielectric theory deals with pseudo-oriented particles shaped as ellipsoids of revolution: it means that we are dealing [...] Read more.
This review paper deals with the dielectric and elastic characterization of composite materials constituted by dispersions of nonlinear inclusions embedded in a linear matrix. The dielectric theory deals with pseudo-oriented particles shaped as ellipsoids of revolution: it means that we are dealing with mixtures of inclusions of arbitrary aspect ratio and arbitrary non-random orientational distributions. The analysis ranges from parallel spheroidal inclusions to completely random oriented inclusions. Each ellipsoidal inclusion is made of an isotropic dielectric material described by means of the so-called Kerr nonlinear relation. On the other hand, the nonlinear elastic characterization takes into consideration a dispersion of nonlinear (spherical or cylindrical) inhomogeneities. Both phases are considered isotropic (actually it means polycrystalline or amorphous solids). Under the simplifying hypotheses of small deformation for the material body and of small volume fraction of the embedded phase, we describe a theory for obtaining the linear and nonlinear elastic properties (bulk and shear moduli and Landau coefficients) of the overall material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
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Open AccessReview Novel Nanocomposite Materials for Advanced Li-Ion Rechargeable Batteries
Materials 2009, 2(3), 1205-1238; doi:10.3390/ma2031205
Received: 12 August 2009 / Revised: 30 August 2009 / Accepted: 2 September 2009 / Published: 3 September 2009
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (1054 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Nanostructured materials lie at the heart of fundamental advances in efficient energy storage and/or conversion, in which surface processes and transport kinetics play determining roles. Nanocomposite materials will have a further enhancement in properties compared to their constituent phases. This Review describes [...] Read more.
Nanostructured materials lie at the heart of fundamental advances in efficient energy storage and/or conversion, in which surface processes and transport kinetics play determining roles. Nanocomposite materials will have a further enhancement in properties compared to their constituent phases. This Review describes some recent developments of nanocomposite materials for high-performance Li-ion rechargeable batteries, including carbon-oxide nanocomposites, polymer-oxide nanocomposites, metal-oxide nanocomposites, and silicon-based nanocomposites, etc. The major goal of this Review is to highlight some new progress in using these nanocomposite materials as electrodes to develop Li-ion rechargeable batteries with high energy density, high rate capability, and excellent cycling stability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Polymer Layered Silicate Nanocomposites: A Review
Materials 2009, 2(3), 992-1057; doi:10.3390/ma2030992
Received: 9 August 2009 / Revised: 19 August 2009 / Accepted: 20 August 2009 / Published: 20 August 2009
Cited by 66 | PDF Full-text (2984 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This review aims to present recent advances in the synthesis and structure characterization as well as the properties of polymer layered silicate nanocomposites. The advent of polymer layered silicate nanocomposites has revolutionized research into polymer composite materials. Nanocomposites are organic-inorganic hybrid materials [...] Read more.
This review aims to present recent advances in the synthesis and structure characterization as well as the properties of polymer layered silicate nanocomposites. The advent of polymer layered silicate nanocomposites has revolutionized research into polymer composite materials. Nanocomposites are organic-inorganic hybrid materials in which at least one dimension of the filler is less than 100 nm. A number of synthesis routes have been developed in the recent years to prepare these materials, which include intercalation of polymers or pre-polymers from solution, in-situ polymerization, melt intercalation etc. The nanocomposites where the filler platelets can be dispersed in the polymer at the nanometer scale owing to the specific filler surface modifications, exhibit significant improvement in the composite properties, which include enhanced mechanical strength, gas barrier, thermal stability, flame retardancy etc. Only a small amount of filler is generally required for the enhancement in the properties, which helps the composite materials retain transparency and low density. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Design, Fabrication, and Properties of High Damping Metal Matrix Composites—A Review
Materials 2009, 2(3), 958-977; doi:10.3390/ma2030958
Received: 30 July 2009 / Revised: 14 August 2009 / Accepted: 17 August 2009 / Published: 18 August 2009
Cited by 27 | PDF Full-text (415 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Nowadays it is commonly considered that high damping materials which have both the good mechanical properties as structural materials and the high damping capacity for vibration damping are the most direct vibration damping solution. In metals and alloys however, exhibiting simultaneously high [...] Read more.
Nowadays it is commonly considered that high damping materials which have both the good mechanical properties as structural materials and the high damping capacity for vibration damping are the most direct vibration damping solution. In metals and alloys however, exhibiting simultaneously high damping capacity and good mechanical properties has been noted to be normally incompatible because the microscopic mechanisms responsible for internal friction (namely damping capacity) are dependent upon the parameters that control mechanical strength. To achieve a compromise, one of the most important methods is to develop two-phase composites, in which each phase plays a specific role: damping or mechanical strength. In this review, we have summarized the development of the design concept of high damping composite materials and the investigation of their fabrication and properties, including mechanical and damping properties, and suggested a new design concept of high damping composite materials where the hard ceramic additives exhibit high damping capacity at room temperature owing to the stress-induced reorientation of high density point defects in the ceramic phases and the high damping capacity of the composite comes mainly from the ceramic phases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)
Open AccessReview Cork Composites: A Review
Materials 2009, 2(3), 776-789; doi:10.3390/ma2030776
Received: 22 May 2009 / Revised: 1 July 2009 / Accepted: 15 July 2009 / Published: 16 July 2009
Cited by 42 | PDF Full-text (444 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cork is a material which has been used for mankind for the last 5,000 years and it is a strategic material used for multiple applications, from wine bottles to aeronautics. Many of current cork materials are composites, in particular cork materials for [...] Read more.
Cork is a material which has been used for mankind for the last 5,000 years and it is a strategic material used for multiple applications, from wine bottles to aeronautics. Many of current cork materials are composites, in particular cork materials for floor and wall coverings and several other building and industrial applications. Recent developments in cork research have shifted from the classical cork-wine relationship to quality and environmental issues, exploitation of cork industry residues and new cork based materials. In recent years a number of new cork based composite materials were developed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials)

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