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Experimental and statistical analysis of carbon fiber/epoxy composites interleaved with nylon 6,6 nonwoven fabric interlayers
Thermoplastic interleaving is a promising technique to improve delamination resistance of laminated composites. In this study, plain-weave carbon fiber/epoxy composites were interleaved with nylon 6,6 nonwoven fabrics with an areal weight density of 17 gsm. The carbon fiber/epoxy composite laminates with/without nylon 6,6 nonwoven fabric interlayers were manufactured by VARTM technique. Double cantilever beam fracture toughness tests were carried out on the prepared composite test specimens in accordance with ASTM 5528 standard. The experimental test data were statistically analyzed by two-parameter Weibull distribution. The results showed that the initiation and propagation fracture toughness Mode-I fracture toughness of carbon fiber/epoxy composites could be improved by about 34 and 156% (corresponding to a reliability level of 0.50) with the incorporation of nylon 6,6 interlayers in the interlaminar region, respectively. The results also revealed that the percent increase in the propagation fracture toughness value was 67 and 41% at reliability levels of 0.90 and 0.95, respectively.