Tensile properties of unsaturated polyester and epoxy resin reinforced with recycled carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic

Mitsuhiro Okayasu, Yuta Kondo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


To better understand the mechanical properties of recycled carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (rCFRP), CFRP crushed into small pieces was mixed randomly in different proportions (0-30 wt%) with two different resins: unsaturated polyester and epoxy resin. Two different sizes of crushed CFRP were used: 0.1 mm × 0.007 mm (milled CFRP) and 30 mm × 2 mm (chopped CFRP). The tensile strength of rCFRP was found to depend on both the proportion and the size of the CFRP pieces. It increased with increasing proportion of chopped CFRP, but decreased with increasing proportion of milled CFRP. There was no clear dependence of the tensile strength on the resin that was used. A low fracture strain was found for rCFRP samples made with chopped CFRP, in contrast to those made with milled CFRP. The fracture strain was found to increase with increasing content of milled CFRP up to 20 wt%, at which point, coalescence of existing microvoids occurred. However, there was a reduction in fracture strain for rCFRP with 30 wt% of milled CFRP, owing to the formation of defects (blow holes). Overall, the fracture strain was higher for rCFRPs based on epoxy resin than for those based on unsaturated polyester with the same CFRP content, because of the high ductility of the epoxy resin. The different tensile properties reflected different failure characteristics, with the use of chopped CFRP leading to a complicated rough fracture surface and with milled CFRP causing ductile failure through the presence of tiny dimple-like fractures. However, for a high content of milled CFRP (30 wt%), large blow holes were observed, leading to low ductility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)561-568
Number of pages8
JournalApplied Composite Materials
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Aug 8 2017


  • Carbon fiber
  • Epoxy
  • Recycled CFRP
  • Tensile property
  • Unsaturated polyester

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites


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