The durability of the nano-Al2O3 enhanced glass fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) composites in hydrothermal environment is necessary for hydro/hygro thermal applications. The present investigation emphasizes the effect of nano-Al2O3 filler concentration on moisture absorption kinetics, residual mechanical and thermal properties of hydrothermally treated GFRP nano-composites. Nano-Al2O3 particles were mixed with epoxy matrix through temperature assisted magnetic stirrer and followed by ultrasonic treatment. It has been observed that, the addition of 0.1 wt% of nano-Al2O3 into the GFRP nano-composites reduces the moisture diffusion coefficient by 10%, as well as improves the flexural residual strength by 16% and interlaminar residual shear strength by 17% as compared to the neat epoxy GFRP composites. However, the glass transition temperature has not been improved by the addition of nano-Al2O3 filler. Weibull design parameters have been determined for dry and hydrothermally conditioned nano-composites. A good agreement between the experimental and the simulated stress–strain results has been observed. The interface failure mechanism has been evaluated by field emission scanning electron microscope to support the new findings.
Polymer Bulletin – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 23, 2017
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