Recent advancements of plant-based natural fiber–reinforced composites and their applications

January 19, 2024

Abstract
Demands for reducing energy consumption and environmental impacts are the major driving factors for the development of natural fiber–reinforced composites (NFRCs) in many sectors. Compared with synthesized fiber, natural fiber provides several advantages in terms of biodegradability, light weight, low price, life-cycle superiority, and satisfactory mechanical properties. However, the inherent features of plant-based natural fibers have presented challenges to the development and application of NFRCs, such as variable fiber quality, limited mechanical properties, water absorption, low thermal stability, incompatibility with hydrophobic matrices, and propensity to agglomeration. Substantial research has recently been conducted to address these challenges for improved performance of NFRCs and their applications. This article reviews the recent advancements of plant-based NFRCs, focusing on strategies and breakthroughs in enhancing the NFRCs’ performance, including fiber modification, fiber hybridization, lignocellulosic fillers incorporation, conventional processing techniques, additive manufacturing (3D printing), and new fiber source exploration. The sustainability of plant-based NFRCs using life-cycle assessment and the burgeoning applications of NFRCs with emphasis on the automotive industry are also discussed. 
Author
Mi Li, Yunqiao Pu, Valerie M. Thomas, Chang Geun Yoo, Soydan Ozcan, Yulin Deng, Kim Nelson, Arthur J. Ragauskas.
Citation
Mi Li, Yunqiao Pu, Valerie M. Thomas, Chang Geun Yoo, Soydan Ozcan, Yulin Deng, Kim Nelson, Arthur J. Ragauskas. (2020), Recent advancements of plant-based natural fiber–reinforced composites and their applications. Composites Part B: Engineering 200: 108254. Doi.org/10.1016/j.compositesb.2020.108254.