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Title:Design of unique composites based on aromatic thermosetting copolyesters
Author(s):Parkar, Zeba
Director of Research:Economy, James
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Economy, James
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Geil, Phillip H.; Sottos, Nancy R.; Cheng, Jianjun
Department / Program:Materials Science & Engineerng
Discipline:Materials Science & Engr
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Polymer matrix composites
carbon fiber
thermal fatigue
fracture toughness
thermal protective systems
liquid crystallinity
Abstract:Aromatic thermosetting copolyester (ATSP) has promise in high-temperature applications. It can be employed as a bulk polymer, as a coating and as a matrix for carbon fiber composites (ATSP/C composites). This work focuses on the applications of high performance ATSP/C composites. The morphology of the ATSP matrix in the presence of carbon fiber was studied. The effect of liquid crystalline character of starting oligomers used to prepare ATSP on the final crystal structure of the ATSP/C composite was evaluated. Matrices obtained by crosslinking of both liquid crystalline oligomers (ATSP2) and non-liquid crystalline oligomers (ATSP1) tend to crystallize in presence of carbon fibers. The crystallite size of ATSP2 is 4 times that of ATSP1. Composites made from ATSP2 yield tougher matrices compared to those made from ATSP1. Thus toughened matrices could be achieved without incorporating any additives by just changing the morphology of the final polymer. The flammability characteristics of ATSP were also studied. The limiting oxygen index (LOI) of bulk ATSP was found to be 40% whereas that of ATSP/C composites is estimated to be 85%. Thus, ATSP shows potential to be used as a flame resistant material, and also as an aerospace reentry shield. Mechanical properties of the ATSP/C composite were characterized. ATSP was observed to bond strongly with reinforcing carbon fibers. The tensile strength, modulus and shear modulus were comparable to those of conventionally used high temperature epoxy resins. ATSP shows a unique capability for healing of interlaminar cracks on application of heat and pressure, via the Interchain Transesterification Reaction (ITR). ITR can also be used for reduction in void volume and healing of microcracks. Thus, ATSP resin systems provide a unique intrinsic repair mechanism compared to any other thermosetting systems in use today. Preliminary studies on measurement of residual stresses for ATSP/C composites indicate that the stresses induced are much lower than that in epoxy/C composites. Thermal fatigue testing suggests that ATSP shows better resistance to microcracking compared to epoxy resins.
Issue Date:2011-08-25
Rights Information:Copyright 2011 Zeba Parkar
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-08-25
Date Deposited:2011-08

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