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Keywords:

  • fibers;
  • mechanical properties;
  • manufacturing;
  • microscopy;
  • thermoplastics

ABSTRACT

Polypropylene/jute fiber (PP-J) composites with various concentrations of viscose fibers (VF) as impact modifiers and maleated polypropylene (MAPP) as a compatibilizer have been studied. The composite materials were manufactured using direct long fiber thermoplastic (D-LFT) extrusion and compression molding. The effect of fiber length, after the extrusion process, on composites mechanical performance and toughness was investigated. The results showed that the incorporation of soft and tough VF on the PP-J improved the energy absorption of the composites. The higher impact strength was found with the addition of 10 wt % of the impact modifier, but the increased concentration of the impact modifier affected the tensile and flexural properties negatively. Similarly, HDT values were reduced with addition of viscose fibers whereas the addition of 2 wt % of maleated polypropylene significantly improved the overall composite properties. The microscopic analysis clearly demonstrated longer fiber pullouts on the optimized impact modified composite. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2015, 132, 41301.