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Microstructural Characterization for Polymer Composites



Richard~undefined~undefined~undefined~undefined~undefined Parnas, Donald L. Hunston, Joy Dunkers, Gale A. Holmes


Characterization of composite microstructure is a crucial area since such features plays a major role in processability, performance, damage tolerance, and service life. Moreover, as the reinforcement geometries available are becoming more complex, the need to know and understand microstructure increases significantly. One example is hybrid composites where the use of two or more fiber types add new complexity to the microstructure. In response to this need, NIST is developing or modifying test methods for characterizing local structure at a variety of size scales. Four examples will be briefly discussed. The first is the single fiber fragmentation test which examines the micromechanics of the fiber-matrix interface region. Continued evolution of this test in recent years has made it significantly more reliable and versatile. The second is a fiber optics method which can study the cure of behavior of resins in the fiber-matrix interface region. The third example applies microscopy methods to characterize the critical microstructural features of hybrid composites. Finally, a new technique called optical coherence tomography is applied to composites and permits nondestructive generates 3D images of internal structure and damage. The images can be obtained rapidly and cost effectively with resolution down to 10 υm.
International SAMPE Technical Conference Proceedings


composites, cure, damage, fiber optics, hybrids, interface, microstructure, optical tomography, viscoelasticity


Parnas, R. , Hunston, D. , Dunkers, J. and Holmes, G. (1999), Microstructural Characterization for Polymer Composites, International SAMPE Technical Conference Proceedings, [online], (Accessed July 19, 2024)


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Created December 31, 1998, Updated October 12, 2021