Assessing the effect of fibre extraction processes on the strength of flax fibre reinforcement

Zeng, Xuesen and Mooney, Sacha J. and Sturrock, Craig J. (2015) Assessing the effect of fibre extraction processes on the strength of flax fibre reinforcement. Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing, 70. pp. 1-7. ISSN 1359-835X


A number of factors impede the direct translation of fibre properties from plant crop species to natural fibre composites. Commercially available fibre extraction processes introduce defects and degrade the mechanical properties of fibres. This study reports on a novel image based approach for investigating the effect of fibre extraction processes on flax fibre bundle strength. X-ray micro Computed Tomography (μCT) was coupled with uniaxial tensile testing to measure the in-situ fibre bundle cross-section area and tensile strength in flax plant stems. The mean tensile strength result was 50% higher than that of the fibres extracted through the standard commercial process. To minimize fibre damage during fibre extraction, a pre-treatment was proposed via saturating flax plant stems in 35% aqueous ammonia solution. By environmental scanning electron microscopy (ESEM), it was evident that ammonia treatment significantly reduced the extent of damage in flax fibre knots and the optimum treatment parameter was identified.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 09 Jun 2017 05:16
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2017 23:40
Uncontrolled Keywords: fibres; strength; electron microscopy; non-destructive testing; Aqueous ammonia solution; environmental scanning electron microscopies (ESEM); microcomputed tomography; natural fibre composites; non destructive testing; treatment parameters; uniaxial tensile testing; strength of building materials; mechanical properties
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0912 Materials Engineering > 091202 Composite and Hybrid Materials
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4016 Materials engineering > 401602 Composite and hybrid materials
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970109 Expanding Knowledge in Engineering
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