Special Issue "Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications"

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Ioannis Kartsonakis
Website
Guest Editor
Research Unit of Advanced, Composite, Nano-Materials and Nanotechnology, School of Chemical Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, 9 Heroon Polytechniou St., Zographos, Athens, GR-15773
Interests: Nanotechnologies; Corrosion science; Electrochemistry; Polymer science; Chemistry; Coatings; Sol–gel method; Carbon Fibers/Nanotubes
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Fiber-reinforced composite (FRC) materials are widely used in advanced structures and are often used to replace traditional materials such as metal components, especially those used in corrosive environments. They have become essential materials for maintaining and strengthening existing infrastructure due to the fact that they combine low weight and density with high strength, corrosion resistance, and high durability, providing many benefits in performance and durability. Modified fiber-based composites exhibit better mechanical properties, impact resistance, wear resistance, and fire resistance. Therefore, the FRC materials have reached a significant level of applications ranging from aerospace, aviation, and automotive systems to industrial, civil engineering, military, biomedical, marine facilities, and renewable energy. This Special Issue aims to attract all researchers working in this research field and will collect new findings and recent advances in the development, synthesis, structure–activity relationships, and future applications of composites including fibers. Research manuscripts, as well as a limited number of review manuscripts, are encouraged in following areas:·        

  • New processing methods
  • Additive manufacturing
  • Joining of composite structures
  • Polymeric composite
  • Ceramic composite
  • Structure–properties relationship
  • Lightweight structures
  • Fatigue, fracture, toughness
  • Environmental effects
  • Applications
  • Recycling

Dr. Ioannis Kartsonakis
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Fiber-based
  • Composite processing
  • Composite fabrication
  • Composite properties
  • Epoxy-based composites
  • Polymer-based composites
  • Ceramic-based composites

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Influence of Thickness on Water Absorption and Tensile Strength of BFRP Laminates in Water or Alkaline Solution and a Thickness-Dependent Accelerated Ageing Method for BFRP Laminates
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(10), 3618; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10103618 - 23 May 2020
Abstract
This paper first presented an experimental study on water absorption and tensile properties of basalt fiber-reinforced polymer (BFRP) laminates with different specimen thicknesses (i.e., 1, 2, and 4 mm) subjected to 60 °C deionized water or alkaline solution for an ageing time up [...] Read more.
This paper first presented an experimental study on water absorption and tensile properties of basalt fiber-reinforced polymer (BFRP) laminates with different specimen thicknesses (i.e., 1, 2, and 4 mm) subjected to 60 °C deionized water or alkaline solution for an ageing time up to 180 days. The degradation mechanism of BFRP laminates in solution immersion was also explored combined with micro-morphology analysis by scanning electronic microscopy (SEM). The test results indicated that the water absorption and tensile properties of BFRP laminates were dramatically influenced by specimen thickness. When the BFRP laminates with different thicknesses were immersed in the solution for the same ageing time, the water absorption of the specimens decreased firstly before reaching their peak water absorption and then increased in the later stage with the increase of specimen thickness, while the tensile strength retention sustaining increased as specimen thickness increased. The reason is that the thinner the specimen, the more severe the degradation. In this study, a new accelerated ageing method was proposed to predict the long-term water absorption and tensile strength of BFRP laminates. The accelerated factor of the proposed method was determined based on the specimen thickness. The proposed method was verified by test results with a good accuracy, indicating that the method could be used to predict long-term water absorption and tensile strength retention of BFRP laminates by considering specimen thickness in accelerating tests. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Longitudinal Compressive Property of Three-Dimensional Four-Step Braided Composites after Cyclic Hygrothermal Aging under High Strain Rates
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(6), 2061; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10062061 - 18 Mar 2020
Abstract
The longitudinal compressive behavior of the three-dimensional four-step braided composites after cyclic hygrothermal aging was investigated using a split Hopkinson pressure bar (SHPB) apparatus under high strain rates (1100~1250 s−1, 1400~1600 s−1, 1700~1850 s−1, respectively). The SEM [...] Read more.
The longitudinal compressive behavior of the three-dimensional four-step braided composites after cyclic hygrothermal aging was investigated using a split Hopkinson pressure bar (SHPB) apparatus under high strain rates (1100~1250 s−1, 1400~1600 s−1, 1700~1850 s−1, respectively). The SEM micrographs were examined to the damage evolution of the composites after cyclic hygrothermal aging. A high-speed camera was employed to capture the progressive damage process for the composites. The results indicate that the saturated moisture absorption of the composites was not reached during the whole 210 cyclic hygrothermal aging days. The composites mainly underwent epoxy hydrolysis and interfaces debonding during continuous cyclic hygrothermal aging time. The peak stress of the composites still behaved as a strain rate effect after different cyclic hygrothermal aging days, but the dynamic stiffness modulus clearly had no specific regularity. In addition, the peak stress and the dynamic stiffness modulus of the composites after 210 cyclic hygrothermal aging days almost decreased by half when subjected to longitudinal compression. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
A Numerical Assessment on the Influences of Material Toughness on the Crashworthiness of a Composite Fuselage Barrel
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(6), 2019; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10062019 - 16 Mar 2020
Abstract
In the present work, a numerical study on the dynamic response of a composite fuselage barrel, in relation to crashworthiness, has been investigated. The aim of this work is to investigate the influence of the material fracture toughness on the capability of a [...] Read more.
In the present work, a numerical study on the dynamic response of a composite fuselage barrel, in relation to crashworthiness, has been investigated. The aim of this work is to investigate the influence of the material fracture toughness on the capability of a composite fuselage barrel to tolerate an impact on a rigid surface. Three different material configurations with different intra-laminar fracture energy values were considered to take into account variations in material toughness. Indeed, the dynamic behaviour of the analysed fuselage barrel has been numerically simulated by means of the FE (Finite Element) code Abaqus/Explicit. The effects of intralaminar fracture energy variations on the impact deformation of the barrel has been evaluated comparing the numerical results in terms of displacements and damage evolution for the three analysed material configurations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Numerical-Experimental Investigation into the Tensile Behavior of a Hybrid Metallic–CFRP Stiffened Aeronautical Panel
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(5), 1880; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10051880 - 10 Mar 2020
Abstract
In this work, the tensile behavior of a hybrid metallic–composite stiffened panel is investigated. The analyzed structure consists of an omega-reinforced composite fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) panel joined with a Z-reinforced aluminum plate by fasteners. The introduced numerical model, able to simulate geometrical and [...] Read more.
In this work, the tensile behavior of a hybrid metallic–composite stiffened panel is investigated. The analyzed structure consists of an omega-reinforced composite fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) panel joined with a Z-reinforced aluminum plate by fasteners. The introduced numerical model, able to simulate geometrical and material non-linearities, has been preliminary validated by means of comparisons with experimental test results, in terms of strain distributions in both composite and metallic sub-components. Subsequently, the inter-laminar damage behavior of the investigated hybrid structure has been studied numerically by assessing the influence of key structural subcomponents on the damage evolution of an artificial initial debonding between the composite skin and stringers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Compression Shear Properties of Bonded–Bolted Hybrid Single-Lap Joints of C/C Composites at High Temperature
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(3), 1054; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10031054 - 05 Feb 2020
Abstract
Based on previous research, in this paper, the compressive shear failure behavior and mechanical properties of bonded–bolted hybrid single-lap joints of C/C composites at high temperature were studied. The compression shear test was performed on the joints at 800 °C to obtain the [...] Read more.
Based on previous research, in this paper, the compressive shear failure behavior and mechanical properties of bonded–bolted hybrid single-lap joints of C/C composites at high temperature were studied. The compression shear test was performed on the joints at 800 °C to obtain the load–displacement curve and failure morphology. The failure modes of joints were observed by digital microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. A numerical analysis model was implemented in finite element code Abaqus/Explicit embedded with the user material subroutine (VUMAT). The numerical results were compared with the test results to verify the correctness of the model. The interrelationship of the compression shear loading mechanism and the variations in stress distribution between bonded joints and bonded–bolted hybrid joints at high temperature were explored. The progressive damage of hybrid joints and the variations in the ratio of the bolt load to the total load with displacement were obtained. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Impact Damage Resistance and Post-Impact Tolerance of Optimum Banana-Pseudo-Stem-Fiber-Reinforced Epoxy Sandwich Structures
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(2), 684; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10020684 - 18 Jan 2020
Abstract
Banana fiber has a high potential for use in fiber composite structures due to its promise as a polymer reinforcement. However, it has poor bonding characteristics with the matrixes due to hydrophobic–hydrophilic incompatibility, inconsistency in blending weight ratio, and fiber length instability. In [...] Read more.
Banana fiber has a high potential for use in fiber composite structures due to its promise as a polymer reinforcement. However, it has poor bonding characteristics with the matrixes due to hydrophobic–hydrophilic incompatibility, inconsistency in blending weight ratio, and fiber length instability. In this study, the optimal conditions for a banana/epoxy composite as determined previously were used to fabricate a sandwich structure where carbon/Kevlar twill plies acted as the skins. The structure was evaluated based on two experimental tests: low-velocity impact and compression after impact (CAI) tests. Here, the synthetic fiber including Kevlar, carbon, and glass sandwich structures were also tested for comparison purposes. In general, the results showed a low peak load and larger damage area in the optimal banana/epoxy structures. The impact damage area, as characterized by the dye penetration, increased with increasing impact energy. The optimal banana composite and synthetic fiber systems were proven to offer a similar residual strength and normalized strength when higher impact energies were applied. Delamination and fracture behavior were dominant in the optimal banana structures subjected to CAI testing. Finally, optimization of the compounding parameters of the optimal banana fibers improved the impact and CAI properties of the structure, making them comparable to those of synthetic sandwich composites. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Synthesis and Processing of Melt Spun Materials from Esterified Lignin with Lactic Acid
Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(24), 5361; https://doi.org/10.3390/app9245361 - 08 Dec 2019
Abstract
In this study, the carbon fiber manufacturing process is investigated, using high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and esterified lignin either with lactic acid (LA) or with poly(lactic acid) (PLA) as precursors. More specifically, lignin was modified using either LA or PLA in order to increase [...] Read more.
In this study, the carbon fiber manufacturing process is investigated, using high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and esterified lignin either with lactic acid (LA) or with poly(lactic acid) (PLA) as precursors. More specifically, lignin was modified using either LA or PLA in order to increase its chemical affinity with HDPE. The modified compounds were continuously melt spun to fibrous materials by blending with HDPE in order to fabricate a carbon fiber precursor. The obtained products were characterized with respect to their morphology, as well as their structure and chemical composition. Moreover, an assessment of both physical and structural transformations after modification of lignin with LA and PLA was performed in order to evaluate the spinning ability of the composite fibers, as well as the thermal processing to carbon fibers. This bottom–up approach seems to be able to provide a viable route considering large scale production in order to transform lignin in value-added product. Tensile tests revealed that the chemical lignin modification allowed an enhancement in its spinning ability due to its compatibility improvement with the commercial low-cost and thermoplastic HDPE polymer. Finally, stabilization and carbonization thermal processing was performed in order to obtain carbon fibers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle
Investigation on the Triaxial Mechanical Characteristics of Cement-Treated Subgrade Soil Admixed with Polypropylene Fiber
Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(21), 4557; https://doi.org/10.3390/app9214557 - 27 Oct 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
In order to evaluate the improvement effect of fiber on the brittle failure of cement-treated subgrade soil, a series of triaxial unconsolidated undrained (UU) tests were carried out on samples of polypropylene fiber-cement-treated subgrade soil (PCS) with polypropylene fiber mass content of 0‰, [...] Read more.
In order to evaluate the improvement effect of fiber on the brittle failure of cement-treated subgrade soil, a series of triaxial unconsolidated undrained (UU) tests were carried out on samples of polypropylene fiber-cement-treated subgrade soil (PCS) with polypropylene fiber mass content of 0‰, 2‰, 4‰, 6‰, and 10‰. The results showed that, (1) the deviatoric stress-axial strain curve of PCS samples were all strain-softening curves. (2) For the same fiber mass content, the peak stress, residual stress, and strain at peak stress of PCS samples gradually increases with the increase in the confining pressure, while their brittleness index gradually decreases. (3) With the increase in confining pressure, compared with that of the 0‰ PCS sample, the increase in peak stress, residual stress, and strain at peak stress of 6‰ PCS sample were in the ranges of 24%–29%, 87%–110%, and 85%–120%, respectively. The decrease in the brittleness index and failure angle was 52%–79% and 16%, while the cohesion and internal friction angle increased by 25.9% and 7.4%, respectively. The results of this study indicate that it is feasible to modify cement subgrade soil with an appropriate amount of polypropylene fiber to mitigate its brittle failure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress of Fiber-Reinforced Composites: Design and Applications)
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