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Mechanical Characterization of Gelatin-Flax Natural-Fiber Composites for Construction

K. M. Hess, W. V. Srubar III*

Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering, University of Colorado Boulder, ECOT 441 UCB 428, Boulder, Colorado 80309-0428 USA

* Corresponding Author: email

Journal of Renewable Materials 2015, 3(3), 175-182. https://doi.org/10.7569/JRM.2015.634106

Abstract

This article concerns the development and characterization of a protein-based alternative to traditional fiberreinforced polymer (FRP) composites used in construction. In this work, gelatin-based resins were prepared at various gelatin-to-water (g/w) ratios. The effects of g/w ratio and curing time on resin mechanical properties were investigated. Using gelatin resins with a 30% g/w ratio, (i) gelatin-flax and (ii) gelatin-fiberglass composites were fabricated, and their mechanical properties were characterized and compared to both (iii) epoxy-flax and (iv) epoxy-fiberglass composites. Fracture surface morphologies were investigated using scanning electron microscopy. Results indicate that gelatin-flax composites exhibit similar mechanical properties compared to the epoxy-fiberglass composites and that FRP composites with fully hydrophobic or fully hydrophilic constituents have better tensile strengths than composites with a combination of hydrophobic and hydrophilic constituents. Based on this preliminary mechanical and physical property investigation, gelatin-based resins exhibit a marked potential to be used as biobased materials in the construction industry, especially in temporary structural retrofit and rehabilitation applications.

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APA Style
Hess, K.M., III, W.V.S. (2015). Mechanical characterization of gelatin-flax natural-fiber composites for construction. Journal of Renewable Materials, 3(3), 175-182. https://doi.org/10.7569/JRM.2015.634106
Vancouver Style
Hess KM, III WVS. Mechanical characterization of gelatin-flax natural-fiber composites for construction. J Renew Mater. 2015;3(3):175-182 https://doi.org/10.7569/JRM.2015.634106
IEEE Style
K.M. Hess and W.V.S. III, "Mechanical Characterization of Gelatin-Flax Natural-Fiber Composites for Construction," J. Renew. Mater., vol. 3, no. 3, pp. 175-182. 2015. https://doi.org/10.7569/JRM.2015.634106



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