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Composites/Plastics: Most Popular Articles

These articles are the most popular over the last month.
What Is Polypropylene Used For?
What is polypropylene? The versatile plastic polypropylene is used throughout our daily life, and has become a common piece for packaging and plastic products.
What Are Epoxy Resins?
Epoxy resins are advanced thermosetting resins used in FRP composites. Learn the basics of this resin, the chemistry, and the uses of epoxy.
What Is a Composite?
When two materials are combined to make a stronger material, a composite is made. Learn what makes composite materials unique, strong, and lightweight.
What Exactly Is a Polymer?
What is a polymer. Discover the basics of polymers and what makes them so useful See examples of polymers and their common uses.
The Difference Between Thermoplastic and...
Thermoset vs thermoplastic composites, what is the difference? Both have advantages and there is demand for both thermoplastic and thermoset composites.
What Is Carbon Fiber
Carbon fiber is a lightweight fiber used in advanced composites. Learn about what makes this material so unique and important.
How You Can Paint Different Composite Materials
How to paint composites and fiberglass. Learn the steps in prepping and finishing a composite material with paint.
What Are Composite Surfboards Made Of?
The composite surfboard combines advanced materials to make the ultimate board. Learn about the key materials of a composite surfboard, and the future of board design.
Vinyl Ester vs Polyester Resins
Both resins have distinct advantages over the other. Find out the differences between vinyl ester and polyester resins.
Composite Hockey Sticks
Carbon fiber composites are the material of choice for hockey. Learn why this sport is turning to advanced composite materials.
All You Wanted to Know about Fiberglass
Fiberglass is a strong and lightweight reinforcement used in composites. Learn about the history of fiberglass and how it is manufactured.
What Is PVC Plastics
PVC plastics are the third most commonly used types of plastic polymers used. Learn about the properties of PVC polyvinyl chloride plastics.
Most Common Plastics
We touch plastic polymers all day long, but chances are you are touching one of these five most common plastics.
How To Carbon Fiber
Discover how to carbon fiber, the guide for learning the various aspects of carbon fiber composites and how to work with the lightweight composite material know as carbon fiber.
PP Plastics
Polypropylene is a versatile plastic used in many places in our life. Learn about this plastic and the myriad of uses.
8 Raw Carbon Fiber Manufacturers
Learn about the various companies around the world that manufacture raw carbon fiber used in lightweight composite products.
Learn All about the Recycling of Plastics
Plastic recycling can reduce the consumption of other natural resources like timber, due to its use in making composite lumber and many other products.
How Is Carbon Fiber Made?
Carbon fiber, perhaps the most useful material of out time, is manufactured through precise processes. Lear how carbon fiber is made.
Uses Of Plastics
The uses and importance of plastic materials in our everyday lives is incredible. Most of use touch a form of plastic at any given time, on any given day.
Applications of Carbon Fiber
Carbon fiber has properties that make it desirable in many applications. Learn about what products have adopted this lightweight and durable material.
PHR
Abbreviation for parts per hundred parts of resin.
The History of Composites
What is the history of composite materials? Find out when the first composite was used, and how composites have changed through the years.
What Makes PET Plastics Advantageous over Other...
What are PET plastics? Learn about the plastic used in water and soda bottles, and how PET plastic is recycled.
Composite Decking
Composite decks are mainstream, and for good reason. Learn about the basics of composites decking.
Uses Of Carbon Fiber
Carbon fiber is used because of it's high strength and light weight properties. Learn which industries have adopted this unique material.
Coefficient of Thermal Conductivity
The rate at which heat is transferred by conduction through a unit cross-sectional area of material when a temperature gradient exists perpendicular to the area.
Example of Composites
There are numerous examples of composites, many of which can be seen around the house. Learn about what every day products are manufactured with FRP composites.
What Is Carbon Fiber Cloth
Learn about carbon fiber cloth. Discover the terms used in carbon fiber manufacturing such as, 3k plain weave carbon, and 282 carbon fiber.
Injection Molding
Injection molding is one of the most low cost manufacturing methods of plastic. Understand the other benefits and history of injection molding.
What's a Composite?
A brief description and definition of composite materials.
Uses of Fiberglass
Fiberglass reinforced polymers are the original composite materials. They remain the back-bone of the composites industry. Learn about glass fiber and what products are made with this composite.
Know the Basics of Polyester and Vinyl Ester
Polyester and vinyl ester resins are the two most common resins used in FRP composites. Learn why these resins work so well.
Gel Coat Application
Gel coat application is a science. Learn the proper methods to apply gel coat in composite manufacturing.
What Are Prepregs?
Prepregs are pre-impregnated fiber reinforcements or cloths that are used to manufacture composites. Learn the basics of prepregs here.
Plastics In Children's Toys
Not all plastics are equal, especial when used in children's toys. Learn about the uses of the various plastics and chemicals in toys.
What Are PBT Plastics
PBT plastics are a versatile engineered plastic polymer with uses in a wide variety of application and industries. Learn more about PBT plastics.
High Temperature Thermoplastics
High temperature thermoplastics are gaining popularity due to their increase toughness and durability.
Top 20 Engineering Achievements of the 20th...
Neil Armstrong announced the 20 top engineering achievements of the 20th Century at a National Academvy of Engineering NAE meeting
Understanding CFRP Composites
Carbon fiber reinforced polymers (CFRP composites) are lightweight yet strong materials. Learn what make these space age materials so useful and desirable.
Properties of FRP Composites
FRP composites have unique mechanical properties which provide benefits. Learn about the properties of fiber reinforced polymers.
What Are Plastics
Plastics are everywhere, but what are plastics? Learn the basics of this polymer material that has taken over our life.
Notch Sensitivity
The extent to which the sensitivity of a material to fracture is increased by the presence of a surface inhomogeneity such as a notch, a sudden change in section, a crack, or a scratch.
Evolution Of Wind Turbine Blades
As the trend for larger wind turbine blades continues, new materials and manufacturing technology will be required to meet this demand.
Composite Materials In Boats
Some form of composites have been used in boats since man first ventured into the sea. But modern FRP composite materials in boats is still relatively new.
What Is Carbon Fiber - (Continued)
Carbon fiber, the lightweight and strong material used in composites. Page 2.
Benefits of Composites
Learn about the features and benefits of composite material.
Arc Resistance
The ability of a material to resist the action of a high voltage electrical arc, usually stated in terms of the time required to render the material electrically conductive.
Vacuum Bagging: Basics - Composite Materials
Basic techniques for vacuum bagging laminates, from your About.com Guide
Polyethylene Terephthalate
Polyethylene Terephthalate, better known as PET, is perhaps the most common and widely used plastic today. Learn about this durable plastic known as PET.
Composites In Aerospace
The material of choice for aerospace is carbon fiber. Learn about the composites that are dominating the future of aerospace.
What Is Corrugated Plastic
Corrugated plastic is an inexpensive building that is incredibly useful. Learn more about corrugated plastic.
What is EPS - Expanded Polystyrene
Expanded polystyrene, commonly known as EPS, is a lightweight foam with extremely good mechinical
Laminating Resins Used In Composites
Laminating resins are the foundation of composite material manufacturing. Learn about the various components that make laminating resins unique.
Introduction to FRP Composites
Fiber Reinforced Polymer(FRP Composites) is an extremely useful material used in a wide range of industries and applications. Learn which industries are using FRP composites
Everyday Plastics
Learn about the plastics we used day in and day out. What are the most common types of plastics we use.
Thermal Properties of Composites
At a certain temperature, FRP composites will soften and lose their structure. This point is called the Glass Transition Temperature, or Tg.
Boeing's 787 Dreamliner
Composite materials and carbon fiber make the Dreamliner the most advanced passenger plane to date.
Carbon Fiber Tubes
Carbon fiber tubes are extremely strong and stiff, yet very lightweight. Discover how they are manufactured and their applications.
Fabric Terminology for Composite Materials
Definition of terms used to describe engineering fabrics.
FRP - Fiber Reinforced Polymers
: FRP (fiber reinforced polymer) is an acronym commonly used in the composite industry and it referees
Polyurethane Foam
Polyurethane foam is widely used as a core material in composites, but it is also used in a wide range of other applications due to the versatile properties.
Recycling Composite Materials
Recycling of composite materials is a new and growing segment of the composites industry, which is needed for and end of life solution.
Starting Resin Infusion
Using resin infusion to manufacture composites is not difficult. Learn about the basic components that will be needed to convert to the vacuum infusion process.
Compression Molding
Compression molding is an extremely efficient method of mass producing plastic and composite products. Learn more about compression molding.
What is Open Molding
Open molding is a low cost and effective way to manufacture composites. Learn about the two most common methods of open molding, hand lay-up and spray-up.
What Is The 787 Dreamliner
The new 787 Dreamliner will be the most advanced commercial airplane ever, and it is composite materials that make it possible. Learn why.
A Brief History of Kevlar
Introduction to Kevlar fibers and their properties.
What is Teflon?
Teflon, a Trademark of DuPont, is a PTFE plastic polymer with many uses. Although it is used in composites, Teflon is most commonly known for cooking pans.
Carbon Fiber Basics
Carbon fiber is an amazing material. Learn the history of carbon fiber, and understand why this composite material is stronger then steel.
Reusing Plastics
Learn how plastic polymers can be reused and transformed into new products.
Filament Winding - The Basics
Filament winding is a unique composite manufacturing process. Learn about the filament winding process, common products made, and the key advantages.
Continuous Fiber Thermoplastics
Thermoplastic resin reinforced with fiber are on the rise as high performance applications require unique the properties of thermoplastics.
Composite Truck Beds - Composite Materials
Growth Expected in Composite Pickup Truck Beds, from your About.com Guide
Types Of Composite Reinforcement
FRP composites receive their strength from the reinforcement. These reinforcements can vary by material (carbon fiber / fiberglass) or vary by style (woven / stitched).
Fiber Volume Fraction of a Composite Materials
The volume of fiber in a cured composite.
Polyester Gel Coats
Polyester gel coats are composed of materials which allow for the manufacturing of high quality composite products. Learn what materials are used in gel coats, and why.
History of Carbon Fiber
Developed for defense applications, carbon fiber composites are being used in a wide range of applications.
Caul Plates
Smooth metal plates, free of surface defects and of the same size and shape as a composite lay-up, used in contact with the lay-up during the curing process to transmit normal pressure and provide a smooth surface on the finished laminate.
Material Properties T300/5208 Carbon Epoxy
Material properties of T300/5208 carbon epoxy unidirectional prepreg.
Composite Core Material
Core materials are used in composites to provide strength and stiffness without adding much additional weight. Learn about the most common composite core materials.
Fire Resistant Polymers
Fire resistant polymers are used to keep us safe in transportation and buildings.
Introduction to Vacuum Infusion
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What Is Blow Molding
Blow molding is a process used in making hollow plastic parts. There are three main types of blow molding: injection, stretch and extrusion.
Complex Viscosity of a Fluid
A frequency-dependent viscosity function determined during forced harmonic oscillation of shear stress.
Software Used in Composites
Learn about the software used in composites, when designing products or creating a visual prototype on a computer.
The Composite Industry
Discover how composites are used in various industries, and how to become a part of the lightweight material movement. Learn about investing, starting, or running a composites company.
Advantages of Composite Materials
Composite materials are commonly used because their properties create significant advantages in the products that are manufactured from them.
Carbon Fiber in Sports
If one wants to be the best in sports, then chances are they need to use carbon fiber. Be it in the sole of running shoes or used in the shaft of an arrow, carbon fiber dominates the sporting goods world.
Fiber Reinforced Concrete
Fiber reinforced concrete is used day in and out, it is even used on the stucco on our walls. Learn why concrete is being reinforced with composite materials.
Composite Fabrics
Structural fibers like carbon fiber are manufactured into cloths and fabrics that are then used in composite manufacturing.
Dictionary of Composite Materials Technology
Introduction to the Composite Materials Glossary.
Fiberglass Bathtubs and Spas
Fiberglass is the material of choice in bathtubs and spas, and for good reason.
Water Absorption
(1) The amount of water absorbed by a composite material when immersed in water for a stipulated period of time.
Composites In UAVs
Composites make UAVs possible. Learn what lightweight composite materials are used in Unmanned Areal Vehicles.
The Pultrusion Process
The pultrusion process is a method of manufacturing low cost fiber reinforced composites. Learn about pultrusion and the benefits.
Debulk
The compacting or squeezing out of air and volatiles between plies or prepreg laminates under moderate heat and vacuum to insure seating on the tool, to prevent wrinkles, and to promote adhesion.
Coupling Agent
A chemical substance capable of reacting with both the reinforcement and the resin matrix of a composite material.
Material Properties AS4/3501-6 Carbon Epoxy
Material properties of AS4/3501-6 carbon epoxy unidirectional prepreg.
Essential Composite Materials Reference Books
The three books every composites engineer needs.
Statistics and the Strength of Composite...
Effect of statistical distributions on composite material strength.
Devulcanizing Rubber - Composite Materials
Goodyear Patents Devulcanizing Process, from your About.com Guide
Areal Weight
Weight (mass) per unit area of a single ply of dry reinforcement fabric.
Splitting Tensile Strength
A method of determining the tensile strength of concrete using a cylinder which splits across the vertical diameter.
Aramid Fibers
Aramid fiber is one of the most useful fibers used in textiles and fiber reinforced composites. The properties of aramid fibers are amazing.
Gel Coat Variables
Gel coat application is no easy task. The many variables that can effect a gel coat make the process extremely difficult.
Basic Design Principals of Structural Sandwich...
Section 1.2 of MIL-HDBK-23A, basic design principles of structural sandwich composites..
Sanding Composites
How to sand composites. Learn the correct methods and what the proper materials are to be used when sanding composites.
Draw Ratio
(1) A measure of the degree of stretching during the orientation of a fiber or filament, expressed as the ratio of the cross-sectional area of the undrawn material to that of the drawn material.
Vinyl Ester Barrier Coat
Vinyl ester barrier coats are used to back up a gel coat and are used to improve properties and increase cosmetic appearance. Learn about VE barrier coats and their application.
Plastic Extrusion
The plastic extrusion process creates products that we use daily. Learn more about extrusion of plastics.
Specific Gravity
The ratio of the weight of any volume of a substance to the weight of an equal volume of another substance taken as standard at a constant or stated temperature.
Elongation at Break
Elongation recorded at the moment of rupture of the specimen, often expressed as a percentage of the original length.
Wet-Out
Wet-out is a commonly used term to describe the resin impregnating a fiber reinforcement. Learn more about wet-out here.
Composite Materials Properties Database
Database of composite material properties.: composite materials properties material properties database carbon graphite database material content database
Composites In Military
Composite materials continue to revolutionize military applications as their properties make for better equipment and armor.
What Is Vacuum Forming
Vacuum forming is an excellent method of manufacturing and molding plastic. Chances are you use something that is vacuum formed daily.
Closed Mold Manufacturing
Closed mold manufacturing, for more efficient composite manufacturing. Learn the three common types of closed molding, and their advantages.
Prepreg Basics
Prepregs are used in composite manufacturing that requires precision, engineered accuracy, and cosmetic perfection.
Honeycomb Manufacturing and Elastic Properties
Because of the way it is manufactured, honeycomb has one direction which is stronger and stiffer.
Environmental Health and Safety Issues With...
An overview of the environmental, health and safety (ES&H) issues associated with composites and plastics.
Hardness Of FRP Composites
The hardness of an FRP composite is an important characteristic of the laminate, measured by a device called an Impressor.
Ablative Material
A term applied to any polymer or resin with low thermal conductivity which pyrolyzes layer-by-layer when its surface is heated, leaving a heat-resisting layer of charred material which eventually breaks away to expose virgin material.
Geopolymer Composites: A Ceramic Alternative...
The 105th Annual Meeting and Exposition of the American Ceramic Society covered a wide range of topics. As part of the symposium on ceramic matrix composites, a special session on geopolymer composites was held. First developed in France several decades ago, geopolymers are being investigated as an alternative to organic matrices.
Addition Polymerization
A chemical reaction in which simple molecules (monomers) are added to each other to form long-chain molecules (polymers) without by-products.
Careers in Composites - Composite Materials
Career options in the composites industry, from your About.com Guide
Linear Polymer
A polymer in which the molecules form long chains without branches or cross-linked structures.
Aldila Introduces New Graphite Golf Shafts
Aldila is introducing two new HM-40 graphite golf shafts.
Applications Of Pultrusion
Pultrusion is the manufacturing method of choice of a number of industries. Understand why pultruded parts dominate various products.
Carbon Fiber
Carbon fiber is an extremely strong yet very lightweight reinforcing fiber used in composite products. It is often used in high-end sporting goods, aerospace, and military applications.
Entropy Bio-Based Resins
Entropy Resins is a manufacturer of bio-based epoxy resins that are truly environmentally friendly. Learn more about their products and company with a question and answer session with their founders.
Halpin-Tsai Equations
These equations are useful for the prediction of the ply properties of composite materials.
Effective Depth of Reinforced Concrete
As applied to a beam or slab, it is the distance of the centroid of the reinforcement from the compression face of the concrete.
Drilling Graphite - Composite Materials
The best drill bits for drilling graphite, from your About.com Guide
Fiberglass Insulation - Composite Materials...
How fiberglass insulation works, from your About.com Guide
Plate-Out
An objectionable coating gradually formed on the metal surfaces of molds during processing of plastics due to extraction and deposition of some ingredient such as a lubricant, stabilizer, or plasticizer.
What Are FR Resins
Fire Resistant (FR) resin and polymers are playing a critical roll in industries regulating fire, smoke, and toxicity.
SACMA Recommended Methods Test Manual for...
Review of the Suppliers of Advanced Composite Materials Association (SACMA) Recommended Methods test manual.
Material Properties Generic E-Glass Epoxy
Material properties of generic E-glass epoxy unidirectional prepreg.
Selecting Composite Materials
Fiber reinforced composites are common, but do you know how to select the different types of fiber and resin used?
Carbon Fiber Plate
Once high tech, and now common, carbon fiber plate is readily available for use in many applications. Learn about how carbon fiber plate is made.
Health and Safety: Resins - Composite Materials...
Health and safety issues when dealing with composites, from your About.com Guide
LRTM - Light Resin Transfer Molding
LTRM is the abbreviation for the composite manufacturing process known as Light Resin Transfer Molding.
Solvent Resistance
The ability of a plastic material to withstand exposure to a solvent including dissolution and swelling.
Fundamental Stiffness Formulas for Sandwich...
Section 1.3 of MIL-HDBK-23A, fundemantal stiffness formuals for structural sandwich composites.
Compliance
The measurement of softness as opposed to stiffness of a material.
Bismaleimide Resins
These addition-type polyimides or maleimide-based polyimides are used in high performance structural composites requiring higher temperature use and increased toughness.
Setting Up a Composites Shop
The basic requirements for starting a manufacturing facility for composite structures.
Balanced Laminate
A composite laminate in which all laminae at angles other than 0 degrees and 90 degrees occur only in plus or minus pairs (not necessarily adjacent), and are symmetrical about a centerline.
Linear Expansion
The increase of a planar dimension, measured by the linear elongation of a sample in the form of a beam which is exposed to two given temperatures.
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