Natural fibers as reinforcement of polymer composites gain attention due to their:
- remarkable mechanical properties
- low cost
- carbon-neutral nature
Natural fibers outperform glass and carbon fibers in CO2 balance. For example, bamboo captures 77 kg CO2/clump/year. However, mechanical properties such as strength and stiffness need to be enhanced to allow replacing glass and carbon fibers.
Our breakthrough idea will lead to reinforcing natural fibers by incorporating nanoparticles (e.g., carbon nanotubes, metal clusters, graphene) in plants as they are growing. The uptake nanoparticles will then be naturally incorporated into the fibers or leaves to improve mechanical performance.
Read the research projects to learn about our innovative solutions.