- Conference date: 20–23 June 2010
- Location: Ischia (Italy)
The interlaminar toughening of a carbon ‐fibre reinforced composite by incorporation of electrospun polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) nanofibrous membranes was explored in this work. The nanofibres were electrospun directly onto commercial pre‐impregnated carbon fibre materials under optimised conditions and PVDF was found to primarily crystallise in its β phase polymorphic form. There is strong evidence from DMTA analysis to suggest that a partial miscibility between the amorphous phases of the PVDF nanofibres and the epoxy exists. The improved plastic deformation at the crack tip after inclusion of the nanofibres was directly translated to a 57% increase in the mode II interlaminar fracture toughness (in‐plane shear failure). Conversely, the fracture toughness in mode I (opening failure) was slightly lower than the reference by approximately 20%, and the results were interpreted from the complex micromechanisms of failure arising from the changes in polymorphism of the PVDF.
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