Date of Award

5-2014

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis

Department

Polymers and High Performance Materials

First Advisor

James W. Rawlins, Ph.D.

Advisor Department

Polymers and High Performance Materials

Abstract

The cure of an epoxy prepolymer with an amine hardener induces stress in thermosetting systems. The extent of residual stresses in the cured epoxy-amine thermosets are dependent on several factors; one of which is the cure profile utilized. The effect of cure profile on cure induced stresses of an epoxy-amine thermoset was examined in the current study. A difunctional epoxide based on diglycidyl ether of bisphenol-A (DGEBA) and a tetrafunctional amine curative were used to conduct this study. Two cure profiles were selected to prepare samples of varying degrees of stress in the cured thermosets. The first was constant heating and the second was stop heating before post cure. Thermo-mechanical analysis (TMA) was conducted to observe the dimensional change as a result of the presence of different degrees of residual stresses in the cured thermosets. The effect of cure-induced residual stress on mechanical properties, modulus, strength, and fracture toughness was also evaluated. It was observed that the samples cured with the constant heating cure profile incurred larger residual stresses as observed by thermo-mechanical analysis. However, mechanical properties of thermosets obtained from both the cure profiles were not affected significantly.

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