Fiber is a product usually gotten from petrochemical industries and other related industries. The fiber as a single material can be made by missing its fiber net with the adhesive after adding the calcium powder. A good thickness in fiber sheet can be obtained by joining several layers of fiber net together and bonding them with adhesive and adding of calcium powder.
Fiber along has its limitations which still makes it impossible to be completely in place of metals. However, a new modification and combination of fiber and plastic have made it possible to obtain a fiber-plastic product that can withstand a great force and hence usually applied in places usually made with metal.
The fiber-reinforced plastic is a form of glass fiber, in which the fibers were randomly arranged, flattened into a sheet or woven into a fabric. The plastic used may be thermoset polymer matrix mostly based on thermosetting polymers such as epoxy, polyester resin, vinyl ester or a thermoplastic.
The product of this type of reinforced fiber is said to be stronger than many metals by weight and can be molded into complex shapes. The application of such fiber includes; aircraft, boats, automobiles, bathtubs, water tanks, etc.
The history of this product started when a researcher Games Slayter accidentally discovered it in 1932 by directing a jet of compressed air at a stream of molten glass and produced fibers. Unlike ordinary fiber, for the structure to be strong; the fiber’s surfaces must be entirely free from defects as such will make the fibers to reach gig pascal tensile strengths. If a bulk pieces of glass were defected free, it would equally be as strong as this fiber-reinforced plastic.
The method of producing the fiber-reinforced plastic can be referred to as pultrusion, the process involves using large furnace to gradually melt the silica sand, limestone, kaolin clay, fluorspar, colemanite, dolomite and other minerals to form liquid, the formed liquid is then extruded through bushings( a small opening from the furnace) and then forced into various shapes. The formed shape may be coated with the chemical solution.
The fiber-reinforced plastic is known for the following properties:
It is stiff and strong in tension and compression.
It is weak in shear stress.
It can withstand higher temperature.
The strength and weakness can be controlled by arranging the fibers appropriately.