# Effects of Nanoclay and Glass Fiber on the Microstructural, Mechanical, Thermal, and Water Absorption Properties of Recycled WPCs

Seo, Young-Rok;Kim, Birm-June;Lee, Sun-Young

• Accepted : 2019.07.15
• Published : 2019.07.25
• 11 0

#### Abstract

When wood plastic composites (WPCs) have been used for a certain period of time, they become waste materials and should be recycled to reduce their environmental impact. Waste WPCs can be transformed into reinforced composites, in which fillers are used to improve their performance. In this study, recycled WPCs were prepared using different proportions of waste WPCs, nanoclay, and glass fiber. The effects of nanoclay and glass fiber on the microstructural, mechanical, thermal, and water absorption properties of the recycled WPCs were investigated. X-ray diffraction showed that the nanoclay intercalates in the WPCs. Additionally, scanning electron micrographs revealed that the glass fiber is adequately dispersed. According to the analysis of mechanical properties, the simultaneous incorporation of nanoclay and glass fiber improved both tensile and flexural strengths. However, as the amount of fillers increases, their dispersion becomes limited and the tensile and flexural modulus were not further improved. The synergistic effect of nanoclay and glass fiber in recycled WPCs enhanced the thermal stability and crystallinity ($X_c$). Also, the presence of nanoclay improved the water absorption properties. The results suggested that recycled WPCs reinforced with nanoclay and glass fiber improved the deteriorated performance, showing the potential of recycled waste WPCs.

#### Keywords

wood plastic composites;waste materials;recycled composites;nanoclay;glass fiber

#### Acknowledgement

Supported by : National Institute of Forest Science