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Fiberglasses

Dr. Dmitri Kopeliovich

Fiberglass is a common name of Polymer Matrix Composite materials reinforced by fine glass fibers.

The reinforcing dispersed phase may be in form of either continuous or discontinuous glass fibers.

Glass is widely used as a material for reinforcing fibers due to the following its properties:

  • Readily available and inexpensive material;
  • Simple and inexpensive technology of preparation of continuous fibers from molten glass;

The types of glass used for fiberglasses are as follows:

  • E-Glass – the most popular and inexpensive glass fibers. The designation letter “E” means “electrical” (E-Glass is excellent insulator). The composition of E-glass ranges from 52-56% SiO2, 12-16% A1203, 16-25% CaO, and 8-13% B203
  • S-Glass – stronger than E-Glass fibers (the letter “S” means strength). S-Glass is used in military applications and in aerospace. S-Glass consists of silica (SiO2), magnesia (MgO), alumina (Al2O3).
  • S+R-Glass – the strongest and most expensive glass fibers of low diameter (half of that of E-Glass fibers).
  • C-Glass – corrosion and chemical resistant glass fibers. C-Glass fibers are used for manufacturing storage tanks, pipes and other chemical resistant equipment.

Glass fibers are manufactured from molten glass, from which glass monofilaments are drawn and then gathered to strands. The strands are used for preparation of different glass fiber products (yarns, rovings, woven fabrics, mats).

The most popular matrix materials for manufacturing fiberglasses are Thermosets such as unsaturated polyesters (UP), epoxies (EP) and Thermoplastics such as nylon (polyamide), polycarbonate (PC), polystyrene (PS), polyvinylchloride (PVC).

Fiberflass materials usually have laminate structure with different fibers orientations in the reinforcing glass layers. Various glass fibers orientations result in anisotropy of the material properties in the plane parallel to the laminates. Concentration of glass fibers in fiberglass is normally about 40% - 70%.

Glass fibers reinforced polymer matrix composites are manufactured by open mold processes, closed mold processes and Pultrusion method.

Fiberglasses (Glass fibers reinforced polymer matrix composites) are characterized by the following properties:

Fiberglass materials are used for manufacturing: boat hulls and marine structures, automobile and truck body panels, pressure vessels, aircraft wings and fuselage sections, housings for radar systems, swimming pools, welding helmets, roofs, pipes.

Properties of fiberglasses

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fiberglasses.txt · Last modified: 2012/06/02 by dmitri_kopeliovich
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