Natural lignocellulosic fibers are successfully replacing synthetic fibers as the reinforcement phase of composite materials in many engineering applications, from automotive parts to building construction and ballistic elements. In addition to well-known conventional lignocellulosic fibers, others with promising properties, like that obtained from the leaves of the fique plant (Furcraea andina), are now being considered. The interface between a composite matrix and the reinforcing fiber plays an important role in the efficiency by which an applied load is transmitted throughout the composite structure. In the present work, pullout tests were used to evaluate the interfacial shear stress of fique fiber in epoxy matrix composites. The results have shown that the naturally bonded filaments that constitute a fique fiber present interspatial voids between them. These voids play an important role in providing adherence of the fiber surface to a epoxy matrix, resulting in an effective reinforcement for a fique-strengthened composite.
Fique fiber Polymer composite Epoxy matrix Pullout test
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
The authors thank the support to this investigation by the Brazilian agencies: CNPq, CAPES and FAPERJ. It is also acknowledged the permission to the use of the tensile equipment of COPPE/UFRJ.