AN INVESTIGATION ON MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF COCONUT SHELL REINFORCED BIO COMPOSITES Thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master in Science In physics by Sarojini Behera


Thesis submitted in partial fulfillment

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of the requirements of the degree of

Master in Science




Sarojini Behera

(roll no-416ph2100)

based on research carried out

under the supervision of

prof. Dr. D.K.Bisoyi

Department Of Physics and Astronomy



Department of physics and astronomy


Prof. Dr.D.K.Bisoyi


MAY 7,2018

Supervisor’s Certificate

This is to certify that work presented in the thesis entitled “An investigation on mechanical properties of coconut shell reinforced bio composites” submitted by SAROJINI BEHERA roll no – 416PH2100, is a record of original research carried out by her under my supervision and guidance in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master in Science in Physics.

Neither this thesis nor its part of it has been submitted earlier to elsewhere for the award of any degree.



Prof. D.K.Bisoyi

Dept. of physics

National Institute of Technology Rourkela



I am heartily thankful to my guide Prof.Dr.Dillip Kumar Bisoyi for his invaluable guidance and support throughout the project work which enabled me in bringing up this thesis to this present form.

I am extremely thankful to Miss Chinmayi Dash for her consistent help. I truely appreciate and value her for her esteemed guidance and encouragement from the beginning to end of the project.

In particular, I will give huge thanks to my project mate Anubhab for his co-operation in the completion of project work. I would like to thank each and every faculty, staffs and students who are directly or indirectly helped during the project work.

Last but not the least I am extremely thankful to my parents who are always there to help and support me.



Using coconut shell powder composite is made. Coconut shell powder is treated with permanganate solution for the improvement of the fibre properties. In order to measure all the effect on the coconut filler composite due to the permanganate treatment characterizing tools like mechanical properties is carried out.

From flexural strength, how much pressure is needed to yield the composites. However increased mechanical properties is observed due to the permnganate treatment on the coconut shell powder.



Supervisor’s certificate 2
Acknowledgement 3
Abstract 4
Chapter 1
1. Introduction 6
1.1 composites 7
1.2 types of composite 7
1.3 natural fiber reinforced composite 8
Chapter 2
2.Literature Survey 10
2.1 coconut shell 11
2.2 effect of permanganate treatment 12
2.3 objective of the research work 13
Chapter 3
3.Mechanical Characterization 14
3.1 Material used 15
3.2 composite preparation 16
3.3 after treated with permanaganate 17
3.4 flexural strength 18
Chapter 4
4 Results and discussion 19
Chapter 5
5.Application 21
6 Conclusion 23
7.Reference 25


Chapter 1



1.1 Composites:

Composite is combination of two or more materials in which physical and chemical properties retain of each material. This composite material is used due to stronger, lighter or less expansive as compared to other material.

From the Concepts of Composite, it may conclude that two components of composite would show (i)either material alone would be wastage of material while combination would form new material which is very useful (ii)when two components act together to equalize the different strain.

It consists of two components matrix and reinforcement. Matrix is continuous and reinforcement is discontinuous in nature. Matrix is the component that holds the reinforcement together to form the bulk of the material. Reinforcement has been saturated in the matrix for the advantages of composite. Matrix plays an important role in the tensile load carrying capacity of a composite structure.

1.2 Types of Composite:

On the basis of nature of matrix, composite is classified into 3 types.


(1) polymer matrix composite

(2) metal matrix composite

(3) ceramic matrix composite’

1.2.1 Polymer Matrix Composite:

These composites consist of a polymer thermoplastic and thermosets which are commonly used in industries. Polymer matrix is the most common advanced composites. It provides great strength, flexibility and resistance to the material and also low cost. It can’t be used in high temperature due to degradation of organic polymer.

1.2.2 Metal Matrix Composite:

These composites are due to the metal matrix such as Aluminium, Magnesium, Titanium. Metals are reinforced to suit the needs of design. Strength and flexibility of metals can be increased and thermal and electrical conductivity decreases by using fiber in metal.

1.2.3 Ceramic Matrix Composite:

These composites have ceramic matrix such as alumina, calcium reinforced by silicon carbide. Advantages of using this matrix is high strength, hardness, chemical inertness and low density. It resists to high temperature and brittle nature of ceramic matrix makes composite fabrication difficult.

1.3 Natural fibre reinforced composites:

It is defined as substances produced by plants and animals that can be made into filament, thread or rope and further be woven, knitted.

The advantage of natural fibre over other reinforce material due to low cost, low density, good thermal properties, high toughness. Natural fibre can be divided into vegetable, animal and mineral fibres.


Vegetable fibres are composed of cellulose whereas animal fibre consists of protein. Vegetable fibre classified on the basis of their location in the plant as bast, leaf, seed, fruit fibres. Plant fibres are consist of lignin, hemicellulose and cellulose. Lignocellulose fibre contains crystalline and amorphous region interconnected through lignin and hemicellulose fragments.

Fig 1: (Classification of composites on the basis of reinforcing Phase and their arrangement)

In plants the bast and leaf fibres provide mechanical support to the stem or leaf respectively. Seed fibres attached to the plant’s seed and aid in wind dispersal. The surface of natural fibre is rough and provides good adhesion to the matrix in the composite material.

Thus this thesis concludes the effect of permanganate treatment on coconut shell powder and also mechanical properties of shell powder.



Chapter 2



Here in this chapter some outlines of literature on mechanical properties of coconut shell powder composites.

2.1 coconut shell:

Coconut is a family of the palm tree. Coconut is used in different ways and now a days its waste product is also used. Coconut shell is wastage part of the coconut, which is a lignocellulosic agro waste.

The inner stone is the hardest part of the coconut called shell.

Testa is adhere to inside the wall of the shell.

Coconut shell is one of the most important natural filler produced in tropical countries. In the recent, coconut shell has taken important role in composites.

Coconut shell composite has greater strength which is used in large range of application such as building materials, furniture and other household works.

Due to low solidity, high cellulose and plenty of coconut shell fiber make them popular in southeast Asia and other areas for a number of rope, fiber and textile.

It has low cost, bio degradable, renewable, high specific strength to weight ratio and environment friendly.

For better strength and stiffness, it is used to make composites which is used in vehicle, industrial area, walls and floors in construction.

Major advantage is that it is used in to make composites in different shapes and mould preparation can occur. It is used as reinforcement in the composites.


Two types of fiber are used as reinforcement to make composites as coconut shell powder as natural filler and glass fiber as a synthetic fiber. Compared to synthetic fiber, coconut shell powder has two advantages due to light weight and reliability.

2.2 Effect of permanganate treatment:

As the strength and stiffness reduces with the use of discontinuous reinforcement in composite material as compared to continuous reinforcement. In discontinuous fibre it is moulded in variety shapes than continuous fibre. Permanganate treatment reduces fibre diameter.

From this how flexural s and tensile strength affects the composite, from literature survey concluded. Coconut shell powder has high mechanical properties than other natural fibre.

Thus the priority of this work is to prepare coconut shell powder. These powders can be used in reinforcement to make composite after that mechanical properties of composite will be studied.

As plant fibres are so many advantages but there is some disadvantages.

(i) absorbs lot of water in plant fibre

(ii) poor resistance to fibre

(iii)poor fiber matrix adhesion

Due to this disadvantage of the plant fibre, there are difficulties for making the composites. For this we need to


remove or reduce this disadvantage, we need to do something which is our objective.

2.3 objective of the research work:

*firstly, we need to reduce hydrophilic nature of the plant fiber by removing impurities from fiber surface.

* The removal of impurities from the fiber surface by doing suitable pre-treatment.

*Composite fabrication by Hand Lay Up method.



Chapter 3



3.1 Material Used:

Materials used in the experiment are

1.coconut shell

2.epoxy resin


3.1.1 coconut shell:

Raw Coconut shell is collected from different place. And also it is a waste product so collected from dustbin, from other wastage thing also. As coconut shell is locally disposable and easily available were obtained from local areas.

After that it was dried for a week under the SUN. Then raw coconut shell is crushed to produce large amount of raw coconut powder. After grinding it is sieved to collect required particle.

(fig2: coconut (fig3:coconut shell (fig4: after sieved)

Shell) powder)


3.1.2 epoxy resin:

Epoxy resin is matrix in the composite and it is continuous in structure. It holds the reinforcement together. It has some properties which is very helpful for making composites. It has good adhesion for different material, high resistance, free from internal stress and good mechanical and electrical properties.

3.1.3 Hardener:

Hardener is used in matrix for more strength in composites and for achieving more physical properties.

3.2 Composite Preparation:

At first a square size tile was taken and glass mould was made on it with the dimension of 5.5cm*2cm*0.3cm and 4cm*2cm*0.3cm. for a quick and easy removal of composite a mold release sheet was covered on glass plate. Mold release spray was also applied inner surface of the glass mould. Weight percentage of coconut shell powder mixed with matrix consisting of epoxy resin and hardener in the ratio 10:1. As coconut shell powder of 0.4 gm in a beaker and mixed with epoxy 7.1gm and stirred it properly for some time. Then kept it vacuum for 12 hours at 60? centigrade. After that 0.7gm hardener with it, then poured into the glass mould. Care was taken for creating of air bubbles during pouring. Pressure was applied on it and kept it for 72hours.


(fig 5: composite)

3.3 After treated with permanganate:

Coconut shell composite is treated with KMnO4 for better result.

(fig 6- composite treated with KMnO4)


3.4 Flexural Strength:

Flexural test was conducted on the instrument INSTRON. Flexural test was conducted by three point bending method by using this equation.

??max = 3PmaxL/ (bh2)

Where Pmax is the maximum load and L is the span (mm) and b and h is the width and thickness of the specimen.

( fig 7-diagram of flexural strength)



Chapter 4

Results and Discussion


After treated with potassium permanganate solution, the strength of composite increases. Flexural strength increases due to adhesion of matrix and reinforcement. Increased permanganate treated flexural strength due to more surface area and cross linked.

(fig8-flexural test)


Chapter 5



Natural fiber can make the composite useful in vehicle plates, in some industrial application and for walls and floor construction. It constructs in building material, furniture and other household works. Composites also use for building swimming pool panels, bridges, space craft and aircraft. Recently researchers have also begun to actively including sensing, actuation, computation and communication into composites.



Chapter 6



In this project studied about composites and composite preparation. Then treatment with potassium permanganate solution in raw composite of coconut shell has done. Mechanical properties like flexural strength of composite was studied. How it is increased after treated with potassium permanganate solution. Treatment was done for removing the impurities and hydrophilic nature of plant fibre.

So this study concluded that potassium permanganate treatment reduces the impurities and increased the mechanical properties.



Chapter 7



1. The science and Technology of fibrous composite by Indra K Varma and V B Gupta published on 2014



4. Natural fiber_reinforced_polymer_composites.pdf


6. A review on coconut shell reinforced composites by R. Udhayasankar and B .karthikeyan

7. Effect on alkali treatment on natural filler.pdf

8. Paper 4.pdf

9. 1-S2.0-S187661961500193X-main.pdf4

10. 4_R_14_2_P16_10_190.pdf

11. 10.5923.j.materials.20170704.01 pdf

12. 1483147689_study_on_the_properties_of_coconut_shell_ powder_reinforced_high_density_polyethene_composite.pdf

13. Hinrichsen, G., Khan, M.A. and Mohanty, A.K., 2000, “Composites”: Part A,Elsevier Science Ltd, 31:pp.143–150.

14. Joseph, P.V., Kuruvilla J, Thomas S., 1999, “Composites Science And Technology”; 59(11): pp.1625-1640.

15. Mukherjee, P. S. ; Satyanarayana, K. G., 1986, “Structure and properties of some vegetable fibers-II. Pineapple leaf fiber,” J. Material Science 21 (January), pp. 51–.

16. Hirao, K., Inagaki, H., Nakamae, K., Kotera, M. and

Nishino, T. K., 2003, “Kenaf

17. Reinforced Biodegradable Composite,” Composites

Science and Technology, 63:p.1281-1286.

18. Vazquez, A., Dominguez V. A., Kenny J. M., 1999,

“Bagasse Fiber-Polypropylene Based. Composites.” Journal of Thermoplastic Composite Materials.” Volume 12

19. S.M. Sapuan, M. Harimi and M.A. Maleque, “Mechanical Properties ofEpoxy/Coconut Shell Filler Particle Composites,”


Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering, 28 (2B), 171-181, (2003).

20. G. Bogoeva-Gaceva, A. Dekanski, V. Panic, D. Poleti, A. Grozdanov, A.Buzarovska, M.Avella, and G. Gentile, “Natural Fibers in Polymer Composite Materials,” Savetpvanje Hemijskog Drustva, 6, 1-4, (2006).

21. Comparison on mechanical properties of

lignocellulosic flour epoxy composites prepared by using coconut shell, rice husk and teakwood as fillers S. Sajith a, V. Arumugam a, H.N. Dhakal b, *

22. Vol-2 Issue-1 2016 IJARIIE-ISSN(O)-2395-4396 6478 3145 Evaluation of Mechanical

Properties of Coconut Shell Powder and PVC Resin Powder K.Trinadh1, E.Ram mohan goud P.Subhash3, Ch.radha


23. American Journal of Materials Science 2017, 7(4): 91-94 DOI: 10.5923/j.materials.20170704.04

Mechanical Characterization of Epoxy/ Basalt Fiber/ Flax Fiber Hybrid Composites Susilendra Mutalikdesai*, G. Sujaykumar, Amal Raju, C. J. Moses, Jithin Jose, Vishak Lakshmanan




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