Researchers at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mandi have used the process of ‘Microwave Curing’ to synthesise thermoplastic fibre reinforced plastics.
Researchers at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mandi have used the process of ‘Microwave Curing’ to synthesise thermoplastic fibre reinforced plastics from jute and kenaf fibres. A team that consisted of Dr. Sunny Zafar, Assistant Professor, School of Engineering, IIT Mandi, and a research student under him Manoj Kumar Singh have worked on this.
Expressing his views
on this research, Dr. Sunny Zafar said, “The fibre reinforcement holds the
polymer matrix together, thereby enhancing the properties of the
He further adds, “Microwave energy is known for its fast heating rates, as we know from our kitchen ovens. Microwave has been shown to result in improved properties of the processed products in laboratories, as well.”
The fibre-reinforced composites are all utilised everywhere today in various domains ranging from automotive to aerospace systems, industries, and consumer goods. Dr. Zafar and his associate reinforced polyethylene and polypropylene into kenaf and jute fibres to produce thermoplastic polymers. Both of them first improved the wettability of fibres by the polymer, then mixed them and subjected the mixture to microwave radiation. The composites hence formed were similar to conventional fibres in properties. Their research titled ‘’Development and mechanical characterization of microwave-cured thermoplastic based natural fibre reinforced composites’ have been published recently in the Journal of Thermoplastic Composite Materials.