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Fracture Toughness Analysis of Epoxy-Recycled Rubber-Based Composite Reinforced with Graphene Nanoplatelets for Structural Applications in Automotive and Aeronautics

1
LMT—Laboratoire de Mécanique et Technologie, Université Paris-Saclay, ENS Paris-Saclay, CNRS, 94235 Cachan, France
2
School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, SUPMECA-Paris, 93400 Saint Ouen, France
3
ME-EM Department, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI 49931, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2020, 12(2), 448; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12020448 (registering DOI)
Received: 31 December 2019 / Revised: 1 February 2020 / Accepted: 10 February 2020 / Published: 14 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Graphene-Polymer Composites II)
This study proposes a new design of lightweight and cost-efficient composite materials for the aeronautic industry utilizing recycled fresh scrap rubber, epoxy resin, and graphene nanoplatelets (GnPs). After manufacturing the composites, their bending strength and fracture characteristics were investigated by three-point bending (3PB) tests. Halpin–Tsai homogenization adapted to composites containing GnPs was used to estimate the moduli of the composites, and satisfactory agreement with the 3PB test results was observed. In addition, 3PB tests were simulated by finite element method incorporating the Halpin–Tsai homogenization, and the resulting stress–strain curves were compared with the experimental results. Mechanical test results showed that the reinforcement with GnPs generally increased the modulus of elasticity as well as the fracture toughness of these novel composites. Toughening mechanisms were evaluated by SEM fractography. The typical toughening mechanisms observed were crack deflection and cavity formation. Considering the advantageous effects of GnPs on these novel composites and cost efficiency gained by the use of recycled rubber, these composites have the potential to be used to manufacture various components in the automotive and aeronautic industries as well as smart building materials in civil engineering applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: toughening mechanisms; graphene nanoplatelets; recycled rubber; Halpin–Tsai; SEM toughening mechanisms; graphene nanoplatelets; recycled rubber; Halpin–Tsai; SEM
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Irez, A.B.; Bayraktar, E.; Miskioglu, I. Fracture Toughness Analysis of Epoxy-Recycled Rubber-Based Composite Reinforced with Graphene Nanoplatelets for Structural Applications in Automotive and Aeronautics. Polymers 2020, 12, 448.

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