Development of ‘E-glass/Bio-based Polyurethane’ ‘Multifunctional Reinforced Nanocomposites’ using ‘low-cost VARTM process’
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Low viscosity soy-based polyol was modified using nano-silica and Halloysite nanotubes (HNT) at different loadings. Nano-silica that was dispersed in high concentration in petroleum based polyol.HNT was dispersed using planetary centrifugal mixer. Aliphatic polyisocyanate was used for HNT composites and aromatic isocynate was used with nano-silica composites as a curing agent to formulate non-foam and full density thermoset polyurethane resin. Further this polyurethane resin was used in conjunction with low cost vacuum assisted resin transfer molding (VARTM) process to manufacture E-glass reinforced composites. Aliphatic polyisocynate was not compatible with petroleum-based-polyol in which nano-silica was dispersed therefore, aromatic isocynate was used. This non-compatibility resulted in delaminations of plies in composites after curing. Polyisocynate products are very sensitive to the moisture in the air therefore; special care was taken i! n their handling and storing. Mechanical tests were performed on these composites including compression, flexure, and interlaminar shear strength (ILSS). For 0.8 wt% loaded HNT modified composites, flexural strength, flexural modulus, and ILSS were increased by 6%, 28% and 82%, respectively. For 7.5 wt% loaded Nanosilica modified composites, compressive strength, flexural strength, flexural modulus, and ILSS increased by 135%, 64%, 34%, and 120%, respectively.