2011 Volume 5 Issue 12 Pages 669-677
This paper aims to clarify the delayed fracture mechanism for glass fiber reinforced plastics (GFRP) in corrosive environments. The GFRP under study is composed of plain NCR-glass cloth and vinylester resin, which both possess high corrosion resistance. In this study, the experimental conditions were performed in air, deionized water, and hydrochloric acid at 40°C. Static tensile tests of woven GFRP were performed to evaluate the mechanical properties and determine the experimental conditions for the constant tensile load tests in each environment. The mechanical properties of the woven GFRP decreased with its immersion into deionized water and hydrochloric acid. The stress-strain curve decreased intensely after the knee point especially in hydrochloric acid, which is possibly because of the damage accumulation generated by the solution and applied stress. Constant tensile load tests of the woven GFRP were performed to investigate the creep behavior and fracture time in each environment. The strain and strain rate increased in the tests in deionized water and hydrochloric acid, which are the result of decrease in the stiffness owing to immersion in each solution. In addition, delayed fracture occurred in deionized water and hydrochloric acid, and the lifetimes in hydrochloric acid were shorter than those in deionized water. Moreover, it was suggested from fracture surface observations that the delayed fracture of the woven GFRP under a constant tensile load in a corrosive environment is dominated by degradations in the fiber reinforcement and fiber/matrix interface.