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Hybridized Polymer Matrix Composites.

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This report describes the results of a program designed to determine the extent to which graphite fibers are released from resin matrix composites that are exposed to fire and impact conditions. The conditions evaluated were laboratory simulations of those that could exist in the event of an aircraft crash and burn situation. Another objective of the program was to evaluate the effectiveness of various hybridizing concepts in preventing this release of graphite fibers. The baseline i.e., unhybridized laminates evaluated were prepared from commercially available graphiteepoxy, graphitepolyimide, and graphitephenolic materials. Hybridizing concepts investigated included resin fillers, laminate coatings, resin blending, and mechanical interlocking of the graphite reinforcement. The baseline and hybridized laminates mechanical properties, before and after isothermal and humidity aging, also were compared. It was found that a small amount of graphite fiber was released from the graphiteepoxy laminates during the burn and impact conditions used in this program. However, the extent to which the fibers were released is not considered a severe enough problem to preclude the use of graphite-reinforced composites in civil aircraft structure. It also was found that several hybrid concepts eliminated this fiber release. Isothermal and humidity aging did not appear to alter the fiber release tendencies. Under the burn conditions used in the program, no fibers were released from the baseline graphitephenolic laminates. Next in order of effectiveness in fiber retention was the polyimide resin, followed by the epoxy resin. MM

Subject Categories:

  • Military Aircraft Operations
  • Commercial and General Aviation
  • Laminates and Composite Materials
  • Textiles
  • Plastics
  • Safety Engineering

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