A Study to Investigate the Mechanical Properties of Recycled Carbon Fibre/Glass Fibre-Reinforced Epoxy Composites Using a Novel Thermal Recycling Process

Sankar Karuppannan Gopalraj (Corresponding Author), Timo Kärki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Manufacturing-based carbon fibre-reinforced polymer (CFRP) and glass fibre-reinforced polymer (GFRP) wastes (pre-consumer waste) were recycled to recover valuable carbon fibres (CFs) and glass fibres (GFs), utilising a novel thermal recycling process with a cone calorimeter setup. The ideal conditions to recycle both the fibres occurred at 550 °C in atmospheric pressure. The processing time in the batch reactor to recycle CFs was 20-25 min, and to recycle GFs it was 25-30 min. The recovery rate of the recycled CFs was 95-98 wt%, and for GFs it was 80-82 wt%. Both the recycled fibres possessed a 100-110 mm average length. The resin phase elimination was verified by employing scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Furthermore, the fibres were manually realigned, compression moulded at room temperature, and cured for 24 h by a laminating epoxy resin system. The newly manufactured CFRP and GFRP composites were continuous (uniform length from end to end), unidirectionally oriented (0ffi), and non-woven. The composites were produced in two fibre volumes: 40 wt% and 60 wt%. The addition of ≈20 wt% recycled CFs increased the tensile strength (TS) by 12%, young modulus (YM) by 34.27% and impact strength (IS) by 7.26%. The addition of ≈20 wt% recycled GFs increased the TS by 75.14%, YM by 12.23% and the IS by 116.16%. The closed-loop recycling approach demonstrated in this study can effectively recycle both CFRP and GFRP manufacturing wastes. Preserving the structural integrity of the recycled fibres could be an advantage, enabling recycling for a specified number of times.

Original languageEnglish
Article number954
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalProcesses
Volume8
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Carbon fibre
  • Compression moulding
  • Glass fibre
  • Manufacturing waste
  • Mechanical properties
  • Thermal recycling

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