Open Access
Patel, Romesh J
Graduate Program:
Materials Science and Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
December 21, 2007
Committee Members:
  • Michael Anthony Hickner, Thesis Advisor
  • Evangelos Manias, Thesis Advisor
  • Polycarbonate
  • glass fibers
  • pullout test
Glass fiber composites have tremendous success in industrial applications because they provide a light weight, high performance, polymer based alternative to other materials for certain uses. Glass fiber composites exploit the mechanical performance of the glass, paired with the light weight nature of the polymer. During industrial processing, glass fibers are easily incorporated into the polymer matrix using conventional mechanical processes such as extrusion or are incorporated as a mesh. As with any composites, the interface between the polymer and the glass play a vital role in determining the mechanical properties of the final material. Commercially, the glass surface is manipulated by using silane coupling agents that bond covalently to the surface. Although glass fibers are now widely used, there is little understanding about the interface between the glass fibers and most polymer matrices. Many scientists have attempted to study the interface by performing micromechanical tests between a single fiber and the polymer matrix. One such test is known as the single fiber pullout test. In this study, the pullout test is employed to study the interface between polycarbonate and glass fibers that have been treated with different silanes. Furthermore, the respective composites with 10 wt% glass fibers in polycarbonate are tested for their mechanical properties (the glass fibers used here were also treated with the same silanes as in the pullout tests). The results from the pullout tests show consistency with theoretical arguments, and correlate to the composites tests.