Fire-resistant flax - reinforced polypropylene / polylactic acid composites with optimised fire and mechanical performances

Pornwannachai, Wiwat, Ebdon, John R. ORCID: 0000-0003-4176-3912 and Kandola, Baljinder K. ORCID: 0000-0002-3621-3724 (2018) Fire-resistant flax - reinforced polypropylene / polylactic acid composites with optimised fire and mechanical performances. Journal of Thermoplastic Composite Materials. ISSN 0892-7057 (In Press)

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Abstract

Fabrics from commingled natural (flax) –thermoplastic (polypropylene (PP) / poly lactic acid (PLA) polymeric fibres were fire retarded with an oragnophosphonate flame retardant (FR). The fire retarded flax/PP and flax/PLA fabrics were melt pressed to prepare respective thermoplastic composites. The effect of FR concentration on the fire and mechanical properties of composites were studied and the results analysed in terms of concentration of FR elements in the composites. While the UL-94 test was used as a benchmark to achieve a V-0 rating, cone calorimetric parameters were used for in-depth analysis of fire performance. The results show that flax/PP and flax/PLA composites require a minimum 0.9 and 0.6 % phosphorus (P), respectively to achieve a V-0 rating in the UL-94 test. Mechanical properties, evaluated in tensile and flexural modes are however slightly impaired, most probably due to the acidity of the FR solution (pH = 3.2). In order to improve the mechanical properties, a buffer solution was used to change the pH to 6.0, which while having a minimal effect on mechanical properties of flax/PP, significantly reduced those of flax/PLA, and increased flammability of both composites and hence overall showed no benefit.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Authors accepted version of paper to be published in Journal of Thermoplastic Composite Materials, Copyright Sage Journals in association with The American Society for Composites
Uncontrolled Keywords: Natural fibre-reinforced composites, polypropylene, polylactic acid, flax fibre, mechanical testing; fire performance
Divisions: University of Bolton Research Centres > Institute for Materials Research and Innovation
Depositing User: Tracey Gill
Date Deposited: 30 Nov 2018 12:38
Last Modified: 16 May 2019 14:21
Identification Number: 10.1177/0892705718815538
Funders: Innovate UK (TSB project no. 100982)
URI: http://ubir.bolton.ac.uk/id/eprint/2048

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