Composites Laboratory Report 2
Composites Laboratory Report
The reinforcement of polymers by addition of carbon fibers has resulted in a new creation of
polymeric structural materials termed as carbon plastics. Due to the unified action of the joined
materials and interaction of the atoms of the materials and the interfaces at the joining plane,
composites have beneficial, superior synergetic, mechanical properties that have become
preferred in most industrial applications. In terms of specific strength and rigidity carbon plastics
have a wide range of structural applications (Callister, W. 2012, 170). Additional properties of
carbon plastics include; low thermal expansion, abrasive resistance and high fatigue strength
when statically and dynamically loaded.
The flexural strength of a material is not an elemental property that can be used in the analysis of
the material when subjected to a load (Callister, W. 2012, 170). This is because of the
combination of shear, tensile and compressive properties when the material is loaded under
flexure. When a flexural loading is imposed on to a material that is analyzed, the three basic
stresses, tension, shear, and compression are exerted on the material specimen (Callister, W.
2012, 170). Normally in a flexural test, the material specimen is loaded in a state where the
specimen is horizontal to its neutral axis. In this case, the stresses induced by compression occurs
in the top portion of the neutral axis. On the contrary, the tensile forces are present in the lower
portion of the neutral axis of the cross-section of the material specimen (Callister, W. 2012, 170).
For most composites usually, the compressive strength because of the combination of the datum