MORPHOLOGY AND FLEXURAL PROPERTIES OF BIOCOMPOSITES FROM MISCANTHUS × GIGANTEUS IN POLYESTER RESIN
Irena Žmak1, Vjekoslav Vurnek1, Jadran Šundrica2
1)University of Zagreb, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, Zagreb, Croatia,
2)University of Dubrovnik, Maritime Department, Dubrovnik, Croatia
The paper presents the study of polyester-based biocomposites with different amounts of Elephant grass (Miscanthus × giganteus) particles. The influence of hot-water pre-treatment, amount and particle size of Miscanthus on the flexural properties and microstructure is analysed. SEM analysis shows the hot washing pre-treatment of Miscanthus fibres causes a porous fibre structure, and consequently lowers the mechanical properties. Composites with smaller fibres have shown higher flexural stiffness and strength as compared to composites with larger fibres. The increase of the amount of fibres has significantly increased flexural stiffness, while slightly reducing the flexural strength. The use of Miscanthus fibres as a filler in polyester biocomposite materials may be appropriate.
Keywords: biocomposites, Miscanthus × giganteus, microstructure, mechanical properties, polyester