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Open AccessArticle

Effects of Styrene-Acrylic Sizing on the Mechanical Properties of Carbon Fiber Thermoplastic Towpregs and Their Composites

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Donghua University Center for Civil Aviation Composites, Donghua University, 2999 North Renmin Road, Shanghai 201620, China
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Key Laboratory of Textile Science & Technology, Ministry of Education, College of Textiles, Donghua University, 2999 North Renmin Road, Shanghai 201620, China
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Molecules 2018, 23(3), 547; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23030547
Received: 23 January 2018 / Revised: 24 February 2018 / Accepted: 27 February 2018 / Published: 1 March 2018
Thermoplastic towpregs are convenient and scalable raw materials for the fabrication of continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic matrix composites. In this paper, the potential to employ epoxy and styrene-acrylic sizing agents was evaluated for the making of carbon fiber thermoplastic towpregs via a powder-coating method. The protective effects and thermal stability of these sizing agents were investigated by single fiber tensile test and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) measurement. The results indicate that the epoxy sizing agent provides better protection to carbon fibers, but it cannot be used for thermoplastic towpreg processing due to its poor chemical stability at high temperature. The bending rigidity of the tows and towpregs with two styrene-acrylic sizing agents was measured by cantilever and Kawabata methods. The styrene-acrylic sized towpregs show low torque values, and are suitable for further processing, such as weaving, preforming, and winding. Finally, composite panels were fabricated directly from the towpregs by hot compression molding. Both of the composite panels show superior flexural strength (>400 MPa), flexural modulus (>63 GPa), and interlaminar shear strength (>27 MPa), indicating the applicability of these two styrene-acrylic sizing agents for carbon fiber thermoplastic towpregs. View Full-Text
Keywords: carbon-fiber tows; styrene-acrylic sizing; towpregs; carbon fiber-thermoplastic composites carbon-fiber tows; styrene-acrylic sizing; towpregs; carbon fiber-thermoplastic composites
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bowman, S.; Jiang, Q.; Memon, H.; Qiu, Y.; Liu, W.; Wei, Y. Effects of Styrene-Acrylic Sizing on the Mechanical Properties of Carbon Fiber Thermoplastic Towpregs and Their Composites. Molecules 2018, 23, 547.

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