Composites A, Applied Science and Manufacturing vol:61 pages:235-244
Due to the intrinsic brittleness of high performance fibres, traditional structural fibre-reinforced composites have limited ductility and toughness. In the present work a new class of fibres is explored for the reinforcement of polymers: continuous stainless steel fibres that simultaneously possess a high stiffness and a high strain-to-failure. The fibres are combined with brittle and ductile matrix systems (epoxy and PA-6) to produce unidirectional and cross-ply composites. The composites are investigated in quasi static tensile tests accompanied with acoustic emission registration. The steel fibre composites are found to exhibit a 3–4 times higher strain-to-failure than typical carbon or glass fibre composites.