Polymer Engineering Faculty Research

Electric resistive heat curing of the fiber-matrix interphase in graphite/epoxy composites

Erol Sancaktar, The University of Akron


A novel method for tailoring the interphase of carbon fiber-polymer composites by resistive electric heating is presented. The single fiber-epoxy resin tensile test is used to investigate the adhesion and fracture properties of the interphase. Electric resistive heating is shown to increase adhesion and toughness at the interphase region. In analyzing the results, the strength and fracture energy of the interphase are related to the thermal postcure conditions created by resistive electric heating. For this purpose, difference analysis method is used to obtain numerical solution for heat conduction problem in the single fiber test specimen and the temperature distributions are plotted. Improvements obtained using resistive electric heating via carbon fiber are compared with those obtained by postcuring of the whole sample via convective thermal postcuring. The results obtained using these two different postcure methods seem to be similar.