Carbon/epoxy laminates interleaved with laboratory scale electrospun Nylon 66 nanofibrilmat and spunbonded nonwoven mats were investigated. The effect of the nanoscale fibers on the fracture toughness of the composite under pure Mode I loading was evaluated. It was shown that the nanofibrilmat is responsible for a major interlaminar fracture toughness improvement, as high as 255-322%, compared to a noninterleaved carbon/epoxy reference laminate. We further studied the improvement mechanism of the electrospun nanofibrilmat compared to a commercial spunbonded nonwoven Nylon 66 mat. A combination of two interlayer fracture mechanisms responsible for the toughness improvement is suggested: the first is related to the high energy dissipated by bridged thermoplastic nanofibers and the second is attributed to the generation of a plastic zone near the crack tip. The interlaminar fracture mechanisms of both electrospun nanofibrilmat and the nonwoven mat interleaving was analyzed and discussed. POLYM. COMPOS.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ceramics and Composites
- Polymers and Plastics
- Materials Chemistry