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Influence of nanoclay on mechanical and thermal properties of glass fiber reinforced polymer nanocomposites

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Unlocking the full potential of composite materials demands innovative approaches. In this pursuit, a groundbreaking study led by Professor M. Chithirai Pon Selvan and his esteemed team at Curtin University Dubai delves into the realm of nanocomposites. The research titled “”Influence of Nanoclay on Mechanical and Thermal Properties of Glass Fiber Reinforced Polymer Nanocomposites”” stands as a testament to the transformational impact of nanotechnology on composite laminates.

Composite panels, a synergy of glass fiber and epoxy resin, have long been an engineering mainstay. However, the study introduces a novel twist by incorporating nanoclay into the mix. Nanoclay, specifically Cloisite 25A, was infused into epoxy resin in varying weight percentages ranging from 2% to 10%. The objective? To evaluate how this infusion influences mechanical properties, thermal behaviour, and surface structure.

Upon meticulous curing and fabrication through compression molding, the nanocomposite panels unveiled a striking improvement in key mechanical properties. The addition of nanoclay showcased an impressive 33.39% boost in tensile strength and a notable 15.88% increase in Young’s modulus for laminates with a 2% clay loading. Moreover, the flexural strength soared to an impressive 438.04 MPa, accompanied by a flexural modulus of 22.12 GPa for the same 2% nanoclay/epoxy nanocomposite.

Beyond mechanical prowess, the research uncovered enhanced thermal stability in the lower temperature range (0°C to 180°C) for composites with lower clay content. This finding hints at the potential for improved performance across diverse operating conditions. The surface morphology analysis further solidified the superiority of the 2% loading, showcasing impeccable surface properties.

Prof. M. Chithirai Pon Selvan, alongside co-authors M. S. Senthil Kumar, N. Mohana Sundara Raju, and P. S. Sampath, leads this groundbreaking research. Their pioneering work signifies a leap forward in composite material engineering, offering a glimpse into a future where nanotechnology augments composite performance, paving the way for a new era of engineering possibilities.

Join us in embracing this journey where the fusion of nanotechnology and composite materials revolutionizes the landscape of material science and engineering, propelling us into a future where performance knows no bounds.

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