Carbon fiber-vinyl ester composite reinforcement of wood using the VARTM/SCRIMPP fabrication process
Publication Name: Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing
Recent studies have proven that wood and wood-based materials reinforced with fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) composites are promising materials for construction applications, especially for structural members. However, there are concerns about the long-term performance of carbon FRPwood hybrid materials, the durability of carbon fiber reinforcement when subjected to environmental conditions and wood preservatives, as well as the carbon FRPwood interface susceptibility to delamination. The objective of this paper is: (a) to characterize a carbon/vinyl ester composite for reinforcement of wood members based on material and interface performance properties; (b) to assess the suitability of the VARTM/SCRIMP process for wood reinforcement; and (c) to measure property retention after exposure to oil-borne wood preservative treatments. Vinyl ester resin produces a durable composite with properly sized carbon fibers and durable wood adhesive bonds when wood is treated with a hydroxymethyl resorcinol coupling agent. The carbon/vinyl esterwood interface properties were superior to E-glass/vinyl esterwood interface properties. The implemented VARTM/SCRIMP technology proved to be a manufacturing process with potential for producing carbon FRPwood hybrid structural members resulting in a reinforcement with high fiber-to-resin ratio, minimum void content and a durable adhesive bond-to-wood substrates.