Sustainable Composites: Processing and Applications of Coir Fibres
The success of fibre-reinforced plastics in the past half century is not without its negative trade-offs. Synthetic fibres, such as glass, have been brilliantly developed to be used in a wide range of applications. While the performance and lifetime of synthetic fibre reinforced composite materials are highly rated, the production and disposal of the products has been proven to negatively impact on the environment. Coir fibre, a by-product of the already large coconut industry, has very high performance qualities but is difficult to process by conventional textile methods. The purpose of the research is to combine the processibility of hemp and flax with the high performance properties of coir to create a composite product worthy of industrial applications. The evaluation of coir fibre reinforced composites focuses on the processibility of the coir fibre into a non-woven, how well it interfaces with polylactic-acid and an analysis of how the properties of the final product change when mixing of coir with hemp and flax.
Authors: Lucas Ciccarelli, Sangeetha Ramawamy, Thomas Gries, Stepan Lomov, Aart Van Vuure, Nhan Vo Hong, Truong Chi Thanh, Nguyen Minh Tri
Conference: SAMPE Europe Conference 2016