Carbon fiber recovery using water and benzyl alcohol in subcritical and supercritical conditions for chemical recycling of thermoset composite materials

  • Rodolfo Morales IbarraEmail author
  • Mitsuru Sasaki
  • Motonobu Goto
  • Armando T. Quitain
  • Saida Mayela García Montes
  • Juan A. Aguilar-Garib


Recovery of carbon fibers by recycling thermoset composites is highly desirable from both economic and environmental perspectives. This reduces waste disposal of scrap from production parts and end-of-life products. In this study, benzyl alcohol and water in subcritical and supercritical conditions were used to recover carbon fibers from composite materials for potential reuse in high-performance components. The reaction temperature and time duration were the experimental parameters. The methods were evaluated by measurement of the decomposition rate of epoxy resin, which reached up to 89.1 and 93.7 % with supercritical water and subcritical benzyl alcohol, respectively. The samples were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). SEM analysis showed complete separation of the composites as indicated by the clean recovered carbon fibers.


Recycling Composites Carbon fiber Subcritical fluids Supercritical fluids 


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rodolfo Morales Ibarra
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Mitsuru Sasaki
    • 1
    • 3
  • Motonobu Goto
    • 4
  • Armando T. Quitain
    • 1
  • Saida Mayela García Montes
    • 2
  • Juan A. Aguilar-Garib
    • 2
    • 5
  1. 1.Graduate School of Science and TechnologyKumamoto UniversityKumamotoJapan
  2. 2.Doctoral Program of Materials ScienceUniversidad Autónoma de Nuevo LeónSan Nicolás de los GarzaMéxico
  3. 3.Bioelectrics Research CenterKumamoto UniversityKumamotoJapan
  4. 4.Department of Chemical EngineeringNagoya UniversityNagoyaJapan
  5. 5.CIIDIT, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo LeónSan Nicolás de los GarzaMéxico

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