Influence of Water on Tribological Properties of Wood-Polymer Composites

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Abstract

Utilization of ecological materials for appliances and products is one of the ways to achieve the goal of sustainability.Wood-polymer composites as a cheap, lightweight, durable and esthetic material has gained attention of scientists, engineers and consumers alike. Different kinds of polymeric matrices, plants used as the fillers, chemical of physical modifiers and processing technologies have already been widely studied. Nonetheless, surprisingly few information on Wood-Polymer Composites’ tribology can be found. This paper is an attempt to fill this gap. Polypropylene-and poly(lactic acid)-based composites with varying wood flour content have been analyzed. The Brinell’s hardness and coefficient of friction of the samples have been determined. In order to evaluate the influence of the moisture content on the tribological and mechanical properties of the composites, the samples have also been aged in water. The investigation revealed that polymeric composites filled with wood flour can present favorable coefficient of friction, compared to the neat resins. The results of our study can establish a good starting point for further investigation.

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