Influence of Seawater Ageing on Fracture of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Epoxy Composites for Ocean Engineering

Type Article
Date 2020-12
Language English
Author(s) Le Guen-Geffroy Antoine1, Davies PeterORCID1, Le Gac Pierre YvesORCID1, Habert Bertrand2
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER Centre Bretagne, Marine Structures Laboratory, 29280 Plouzané, France
2 : Direction Générale de l’Armement, IP/MCM/PMA, PC62, 60 boulevard du Général Valin, 75015 Paris, France
Source Oceans (2673-1924) (MDPI AG), 2020-12 , Vol. 1 , N. 4 , P. 198-214
DOI 10.3390/oceans1040015
Note This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Advances and Challenges in Ocean Science—Feature Papers for the Founding of Oceans
Keyword(s) composite, delamination, seawater, immersion, ageing

Carbon fiber reinforced composite materials are finding new applications in highly loaded marine structures such as tidal turbine blades and marine propellers. Such applications require long-term damage resistance while being subjected to continuous seawater immersion. However, few data exist on which to base material selection and design. This paper provides a set of results from interlaminar fracture tests on specimens before and after seawater ageing. The focus is on delamination as this is the main failure mechanism for laminated composites under out-of-plane loading. Results show that there are two contributions to changes in fracture toughness during an accelerated wet ageing program: effects due to water and effects due to physical ageing. These are identified and it is shown that this composite retains over 70% of its initial fracture properties even for the worst case examined.

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