Characteristics of hemp fabric reinforced nanoclay–cement nanocomposites
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Cement eco-nanocomposites reinforced with hemp fabric (HF) and nanoclay platelets (Cloisite 30B) are fabricated and investigated in terms of X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, physical and mechanical properties. Results indicated that the mechanical properties generally increased as a result of the addition of nanoclay into the cement matrix with HF. An optimum replacement of ordinary Portland cement with 1 wt% nanoclay decreased the porosity and also significantly increased the density, flexural strength and fracture toughness of HF-reinforced nanocomposite. The microstructural results indicate that the nanoclay behaves not only as a filler to improve the microstructure, but also as an activator to promote the pozzolanic reaction and thus improved the adhesion with hemp fabric. The failure micromechanisms and energy dissipative processes in HF-reinforced cement composite and HF-reinforced nanocomposite are discussed in terms of microstructural observations. These cement eco-nanocomposites can provide new insights for the development of new ‘environmental-friendly nanomaterials’ for building applications such as the construction of sandwich panels, ceilings and roofs.
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