Role of matrix in composite • Matrix is the continuous phase of a composite material. The matrix performs various functions. ✓ The matrix material holds the fibers together. ✓ The matrix plays an important role to keep the fibers at desired positions. The desired distribution of the fibers is very important from micromechanical point of view. ✓ The matrix keeps the fibers separate from each other so that the mechanical degradation (e.g., by abrasion) between them does not occur. ✓ It transfers the load uniformly between fibers
• The processing and defects in a composite material depend strongly on the processing characteristic s of the matrix. • The matrix provides lateral support against the possibility of fiber buckling under compressive loading • It provides protection to fibers from environmental effects, chemical and moisture. • It provides better finish to the final product. • A ductile matrix will provide slowing down or stopping cracks that might have originated at broken fibers.
Classification of Matrix Materials • Matrix can be broadly classified into • Polymer matrix composites • Metal matrix composites • Ceramic matrix composites
Polymer Matrix Composites • The material consisting of a polymer (resin) matrix combined with a fibrous reinforcing dispersed phase. • Polymer Matrix Composites are most commonly used matrix materials due to its advantages like cost, efficiency, light weight, high strength to weight ratio and environmental friendly. • The matrix often determines the maximum service temperature, since it normally softens, melts, or degrades at a much lower temperature than the fiber reinforcement.