Effect of Chemically Modified <i>Cissus Populnea</i> Fibers on Mechanical, Microstructural and Physical Properties of <i>Cissus populnea</i>/High Density Polyethylene Composites
The effect of chemically modified Cissus populnea (C. populnea) fiber using sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) on mechanical, morphological and physical (density and water absorption behaviour) properties of C. populnea fiber/recycled HDPE composites was aimed to be investigated. The composites of unmodified and modified C. populnea fiber/HDPE were prepared using injection molding machine. The mechanical properties (tensile strength and modulus, flexural strength and modulus, hardness and impact strength), interfacial shear stress, density, water absorption behaviour, scanning electron microscope (SEM) and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscope were studied. The results shows that C. populnea fiber improved the mechanical properties of HDPE matrix with reduced impact strength of the composites. The NaOH and SLS treatments, respectively, improved the mechanical properties of C. populnea fiber/HDPE composites, although NaOH treated C. populnea fiber reduced the tensile modulus. The change in morphology and functional group, respectively, due to the modification was observed in SEM and FTIR. The density and water absorption of the composites, respectively, reduced when SLS modified C. populnea fiber was used compared to untreated C. populnea fiber/HDPE composites. The SLS treated C. populnea fiber prove to be superior for reinforcement, stiffness and light weight material.