Effect of Steamed and Non-Steamed Populus deltoides Fiber on the Physical, Mechanical, and Morphological Characteristics of Composites Made from Virgin Polypropylene

Habibollah Khademi Eslam, Ahmad Samariha


The effects of steamed Populus deltoides fiber were studied relative to the physical, mechanical, and morphological characteristics of composites made from virgin polypropylene. Fibers of Populus deltoides were used during the reinforcement phase at 180 °C for 1 h. The tests were carried out with 57% of virgin polypropylene that was combined with 3% of maleic anhydride-modified polypropylene and 40% of wood fiber. The wood fiber portion consisted of either non-steamed fiber, steamed fiber, and an equal mixture of the two kinds of fiber. Mixing was done using an internal mixer at 180 °C and 60 rpm, and the standard samples were constructed by injection molding. Then, the physical and mechanical characteristics of samples were measured. To consider compatibility between the matrix and reinforcement phase, SEM pictures were taken from the break surface of composite samples. The results showed that the composites’ strengths were affected by steam, as components having steamed fibers had the best mechanical strength and dimensional stability, and also the least water absorption and thickness swelling.


Composites; Polypropylene; SEM; Steaming; Populus deltoides fiber

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