Mechanical Characterization and Fractography of Glass Fiber/Polyamide (PA6) Composites

Durai Prabhakaran Raghavalu Thirumalai, Saju Pillai, Samuel Charca, Simin A. Oshkovr, Hans Knudsen, Tom Løgstrup Andersen, Jakob Ilsted Bech, Ole Thybo Thomsen, Hans Lilholt

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The mechanical properties of the glass fiber reinforced Polyamide (PA6) composites made by prepreg tapes and commingled yarns were studied by in-plane compression, short-beam shear, and flexural tests. The composites were fabricated with different fiber volume contents (prepregs—47%, 55%, 60%, and commingled— 48%, 48%, 49%, respectively) by using vacuum consolidation technique. To evaluate laminate quality in terms of fiber wet-out at filament level, homogeneity of fiber/matrix distribution, and matrix/ fiber bonding standard microscopic methods like optical microscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) were used. Both commingled and prepreg glass fiber/PA6 composites (with Vf ∼ 48%) give mechanical properties such as compression strength (530–570 MPa), inter-laminar shear strength (70–80 MPa), and transverse strength (80–90 MPa). By increasing small percentage in the fiber content show significant rise in compression strength, slight decrease in the ILSS and transverse strengths, whereas semipreg give very poor properties with the slight increase in fiber content. Overall comparison of mechanical properties indicates commingled glass fiber/PA6 composite shows much better performance compared with prepregs due to uniform distribution of fiber and matrix, better meltimpregnation while processing, perfect alignment of glass fibers in the composite. This study proves again that the presence of voids and poor interface bonding between matrix/fiber leads to decrease in the mechanical properties. Fractographic characterization of postfailure surfaces reveals information about the cause and sequence of failure. © 2014 Society of Plastics Engineers
Original languageEnglish
JournalPolymer Composites
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)834–853
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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