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Chemistry International
Vol. 24, No. 5
September 2002


Highlights from Pure and Applied Chemistry

Future Requirements In the Characterization of Continuous Fiber Reinforced Polymeric Composites (IUPAC Technical Report)

by D. R. Moore and A. Cervenka
Pure and Applied Chemistry, Vol. 74, No. 4, pp. 601-628 (2002)

There has been enormous activity in the field of continuous fiber reinforced polymeric composites research, particularly in the period between 1980 and the present. Although there has also been a decline in this activity in the last few years, nevertheless, there is likely to be future expansion for these materials in a range of areas, most of which will be motivated by a specific property per unit weight. Consequently, characterization of composites is likely to remain a key issue.

Much of the historic activity on characterization has been associated with processing, properties, and structure. In addition, there remains plenty yet to explore. A number of the scientists associated with the historic activities are active on the IUPAC Working Party on Structure and Properties of Commercial Polymers, under the chairmanship of Martin Laun. Therefore, this group has considered what activities might be required in the future in order to better characterize continuous fiber reinforced composites and in addition to contemplate some current and future issues.

This report examines the characterization of continuous fiber reinforced composites in terms of processing, properties, and structure. The historic background of five processing and five property topics are then reviewed with the aim of identifying current issues and requirements for the future. The topics covered in the processing section are polymeric matrix, impregnation, interfacial effects, residual stresses, and pre-preg tack. In the mechanical properties section the topics include choice of standard, recycling and re-usability, durability, environmental strength, and toughness. The paper provides a 10-point plan for future requirements.

In common with this IUPAC Working Party’s activities, the contributions for this work come from a wide international group of scientists from both industry and academia and include C. B. Bucknall (UK), R. S. Bailey (UK), B. Pukansky (Hungary), A. Galeski (Poland), D. R. Moore (UK), L. Glas (Belgium), W. Alstadt (Germany), B. Gunesin (Turkey), A. Cervenka (Holland), and J. G. Williams (UK).


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