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Fatigue damage propagation and creep behavior on sisal/epoxy composites


The lack of knowledge about the behavior under creep and fatigue limits the use of polymeric composites reinforced with natural fibers. Thus, this work assessed the behavior of epoxy composites reinforced with sisal fibers under tensile, fatigue, and creep tests. Also, thermogravimetry and scanning electron microscopy assessed the sodium hydroxide (NaOH) treatment efficiency in sisal fibers. Further, differential scanning calorimetry determined the degree of cure of the composites, and stereomicroscopy allowed the evaluation of the surface’s fracture. As a result, the tensile strength of the composite was 1.4 times the value of neat epoxy resin after 100,000 cycles in the fatigue test. Moreover, when loaded with 20% of the maximum tensile strength, it is estimated that the composite resists 200,000 h without rupturing by creep. To conclude, the efficient adhesion between sisal fibers and epoxy obtained by NaOH treatment allowed good mechanical behavior to the epoxy composite.

natural fibers; NaOH treatment; mechanical properties; thermal behavior

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