Scientists at the University of British Columbia have come up with a way to increase the strength of biocomposite materials using plastination. The study was published in the journal Composite Structures.
Canadian researchers have shown that adding 10% laminated bamboo to a fiberglass composite improves its ability to absorb impact energy. At the same time, the elastic properties of the material are preserved.
“Bamboo is almost as strong as steel, but more flexible,” said Abbas Milani, one of the co-authors of the study. “Due to its lightness, price and availability, this material has great potential for industry. Until now, he had only one big flaw.
Biocomposite materials actively absorb moisture, which leads to rapid destruction. Scientists used plastination, which was traditionally used to preserve the remains of animals and humans. This method preserves perishable biological samples. As a result of the treatment, water and fat in the tissues are replaced by a polymer.
“The laminated bamboo composite has been blended with glass and polymer fibers to create a material that is lighter and stronger than its counterparts,” says researcher Daanvir Dhir. — Our work is unique. No one has previously explored the possibility of using plated natural fibers in biocomposites.”
Scientists will continue to work on optimizing the created material. According to Dhir, plastination now takes a long time, but the process can be improved.
“Discovering the correct composition of plated fibers will lead to a significant reduction in non-degradable waste in many industries,” Dhir adds.