Microstructural Characterization and Property of Carbon Fiber Reinforced High-Density Polyethylene Composites Fabricated by Fused Deposition Modeling
As a promising industrial thermoplastic polymer material, high-density polyethylene (HDPE) possesses distinct properties of ease to process, good biocompatibility, high recyclability, etc. and has been widely used to make packaging, prostheses and implants, and liquid-permeable membranes. Traditional manufacturing processes for HDPE, including injection molding, thermoforming, and rotational molding, require molds or post processing. In addition, part shapes are highly restricted., Thus, fused deposition modeling (FDM) is introduced to process HDPE materials to take advantage of FDM&rsquo;s free of design, no mold requirement, ease and low cost of processing. To improve the mechanical properties (such as stiffness and strength) and thermal resistance of HDPE, carbon fiber (CF) was incorporated into HDPE, and CF-reinforced HDPE composites were successfully fabricated using FDM process. In addition, the effects of CF content on surface quality, microstructure characterizations, tensile properties, dynamic mechanical properties, and thermal properties have been investigated. Experimental results show that an appropriate CF content addition is beneficial for improving surface quality, and mechanical and thermal properties.