A recent study demonstrated that the use of TFP-based aramid nonwovens in composite surface applications can effectively protect the underlying structure of composites from abrasion.
This lightweight aramid veil achieves a high-quality finish while also providing a durable wear layer in applications where composites are subject to frequent friction, such as high-speed composite press rolls, automotive friction substrates, or sporting goods. Continued wear can adversely affect the performance of composite materials, significantly reducing product life.
By comparing composite panels made with aramid veils with and without TFP, this study examined the effectiveness of using this surface veil to improve abrasion resistance. These composite panels made of epoxy resin and woven carbon fiber were tested with a pin-on-disk friction tester to measure friction and wear as a function of time. The data obtained from this showed that when using the aramid surface veil, the friction coefficient was significantly reduced, requiring at least 5 times longer to reach the level of wear achieved by the control. This basically means that the friction experienced by the composite surface is significantly reduced and very little of the material suffers from wear as a result. Microscopic imaging of the samples also confirmed this finding: the surface fibers were only damaged but not broken, compared to composite panels with aramid surface veils, in which the outer layer of woven reinforcement did not suffer any damage.
The results of this study show that the aramid veil, acting as a wear layer, plays an important role in providing protection to the underlying reinforcements, thereby enhancing the durability and longevity of the composite structure.