University of North Texas, USA
Title: Natural fiber for automobile and aerospace components design
Biography: Sheldon Q Shi
This presentation talks about the new technologies of using the natural fibers to replace the synthetic fibers (fiber glass, carbon fibers) for automobile and aerospace structural and nonstructural components design. The manufacturing processes for the natural fiber composites are discussed including laminated sheet molding compounding (SMC) process, and vacuum assist resin transfer molding process, and other processes. The physical, mechanical and durability performance of the natural fiber SMC are presented in a comparison with the commercial synthetic SMC products. The pros and cons of using the natural fiber to replace the synthetic fibers are discussed. A novel in situ nanoparticle impregnation process for the lignocellulosic fibers is also presented. This process is to introduce the ionic liquids into the micropore structure of the cellulosic fibers consecutively. When a precursor applies at certain conditions (such as increasing the temperature), the impregnated chemicals react inside the micropore structures of the fibers and to form the desired nanoparticles. This technique takes advantage of the porous structure of the cellulosic fibers permitting the nanoparticles to be more evenly distributed into the resulted natural fiber products. By the impregnation treatment of the cellulosic fiber with different nanophases (such as noble metals, iron, iron oxides, and etc.), the resulted products will present certain functions, such as magnetic, anti-static, anti-radiation, anti-permeation, anti-microbial, and etc. Some functional properties of the resulted functional composites will be discussed, such as EMI shielding panel, magnetic activated carbon, and etc.