Applied Composite Materials

, Volume 19, Issue 3–4, pp 459–473 | Cite as

Sea Water Ageing of Composites for Ocean Energy Conversion Systems: Influence of Glass Fibre Type on Static Behaviour

  • Amélie Boisseau
  • Peter Davies
  • Frédéric Thiebaud


Composite material components will be an essential part of ocean energy recovery devices, and their long term durability in sea water must be guaranteed. Despite extensive experience for boat structures and wind turbines few data exist to design structures subjected to a combination of mechanical loads and sea water immersion. This paper presents the first results from an experimental study, performed jointly with fibre manufacturers, and a resin supplier, to fill this gap. The experimental study is completed by numerical modelling to simulate the coupling between water absorption and mechanical behaviour. Sea water ageing is shown to result in a drop in quasi–static mechanical properties and a change in flexural mode from compression to tension at longer ageing times, which is consistent with results from the numerical simulations.


Composite material Sea water ageing Failure mechanism Flexure Tidal turbine 



The authors are grateful to the members of this project for advice and support, in particular to Claude Renaud, Paul Lucas and Georg Adolphs (OCV), Luc Peters, Philippe Nellissen (3B), Rolf Nickel and Christoph Kensche (Momentive), Dominique Perreux (MaHyTec), and Dominique Choqueuse, Nicolas Lacotte, Bertrand Forest, Albert Deuff and Benoit Bigourdan (IFREMER Brest).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amélie Boisseau
    • 1
  • Peter Davies
    • 1
  • Frédéric Thiebaud
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.IFREMER Centre de Brest, Materials and Structures groupPlouzanéFrance
  2. 2.Université de Franche-Comté, DMA/FEMTO-STBesançonFrance
  3. 3.MAHYTECDoleFrance

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