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Fibre-reinforced Polymer Composites

Mechanical properties of fibers used to reinforce polymer composites

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Mechanical properties of some common fibers used to reinforce polymer composites:

FiberTensile StrengthTensile Modulus
(Young's Modulus)
(MPa)(103 psi)(GPa)(106 psi)(kg/m3)(lb/in3)
E-Glass 3500 510 72.5 10.5 4.9 2630 0.095
S-Glass 4600 670 88 12.8 5.5 2490 0.09
AS-4 PAN-Based Carbon 4000 578 245 35.5 1.6 1800 0.065
IM-7 PAN-Based Carbon 4900 710 317 46 1.7 1744 0.063
P120 Pitch-Based Graphite 2250 325 827 120 0.27 2187 0.079
Alumina/Silica 1950 280 297 43   3280 0.12
Kevlar 29 2860 410 64 9.3   1440 0.052
Kevlar 49 3650 530 124 18 2.5 1440 0.052
Boron 3620 525 400 58 1 2574 0.093
  • E-glass - A low alkali borosilicate glass with good electrical and mechanical properties and good chemical resistance. The most widely used in fibers for reinforcing plastics.
  • S-Glass is a stiffer/stronger version of E-glass which is also used in polymer matrix composites. S-Glass is generally used for polymer matrix composites that require improved mechanical properties compared to E-glass based composites.
  • PAN-Based Carbon fibers are made of polyacrylonitrile (PAN). Carbon fibers are high-strength and high-
    stiffness materials used in advanced constructions like military aircrafts etc.
  • Alumina/Silica or trademark Saffil is produced as a fiber and was developed for thermal insulation at higher temperatures.
  • Kevlar 29 is used in industrial applications such as cables, asbestos replacement, brake linings, and body armor.
  • Kevlar 49 is considered to have the greatest tensile strength of all the aramids, and is used in applications such as plastic reinforcement for boat hulls, airplanes, and bikes.
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