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Understanding the Stress Relaxation Behavior of Polymers Reinforced with Short Elastic Fibers

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Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry, Advanced Materials Group, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON M5S 3E5, Canada
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Faculty of Forestry, Centre for Biocomposites and Biomaterial Processing, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON M5S 3B3, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Geminiano Mancusi
Materials 2017, 10(5), 472; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma10050472
Received: 10 April 2017 / Revised: 21 April 2017 / Accepted: 26 April 2017 / Published: 28 April 2017
Although it has been experimentally shown that the addition of short-fibers slows the stress relaxation process in composites, the underlying phenomenon is complex and not well understood. Previous studies have proposed that fibers slow the relaxation process by either hindering the movement of nearby polymeric chains or by creating additional covalent bonds at the fiber-matrix interface that must be broken before bulk relaxation can occur. In this study, we propose a simplified analytical model that explicitly accounts for the influence of polymer viscoelasticity on shear stress transfer to the fibers. This model adequately explains the effect of fiber addition on the relaxation behavior without the need to postulate structural changes at the fiber-matrix interface. The model predictions were compared to those from Monte Carlo finite-element simulations, and good agreement between the two was observed. View Full-Text
Keywords: stress relaxation; fiber-reinforced composites; viscoelasticity; finite-element modelling stress relaxation; fiber-reinforced composites; viscoelasticity; finite-element modelling
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Obaid, N.; Kortschot, M.T.; Sain, M. Understanding the Stress Relaxation Behavior of Polymers Reinforced with Short Elastic Fibers. Materials 2017, 10, 472.

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