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5/16/2017  |   2:30 PM - 2:55 PM   |  2

Laser Flash Measurements on Thermal Conductivity of Bio-Fiber (Kenaf) Reinforced Composites

Chemical treatment of bio-fibers is a commonly accepted mechanism for improving mechanical properties of bio-fiber reinforced composites. However, there is still very little information demonstrating the effect of this chemical treatment on the thermal properties of such composites. This presentation reports thermal transport in kenaf-epoxy composites. Composites were fabricated using either untreated fibers or fibers that had been treated in a 6% NaOH solution. The laser flash apparatus (LFA) method and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) were both employed to obtain values effective thermal diffusivity and specific heat. Images of the treated fibers and composites taken using a scanning electron microscope showed a much smoother outer surface along with a significant reduction in fibril exposure and improved contact between fiber and epoxy compared to the untreated kenaf samples and composites. It was found that the effective thermal conductivities and thermal diffusivities of chemically treated fiber composites show a general increase over the untreated fiber composite. This increase is primarily attributed to the improved contact between treated fiber and epoxy, which is the same mechanism for improved mechanical properties.

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Ezekiel Villarreal (POC,Primary Presenter,Author,Co-Author), Utah State University,;
Levi Gardner (Co-Author), Utah State University,;
Kurt Harris (Co-Author), Utah State University,;
Heng Ban (Co-Author), Utah State University,;
Thomas Fronk (Co-Author), Utah State University,;

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