Hybrid glass fiber-reinforced thermoplastic nanocomposites
The feasibility of integrating thermoplastic isotactic polypropylene/ montmorillonite nanocomposite matrices into conventional fiber-reinforced composites has been investigated. Two basic processing routes were considered: long glass fiber (GF)-reinforced composites based on co-wound or co-woven yarns and glass mat reinforced composites. In each case satisfactory impregnation and consolidation were demonstrated, although at high fiber contents, this required increased pressures and/or temperatures in the presence of the montmorillonite. Flexural tests on the glass mat reinforced composites, containing relatively low GF contents, showed the use of a nanocomposite matrix to lead to the significant improvements in bending stiffness and strength.