In general, we can say that a fiber-reinforced plastic made with glass known as glass fiber. It is most commercially viable reinforced fiber till now. If I talk about comparison, it is much cheaper than carbon fiber. it is more flexible and also stronger than metals. And it is transparent to non-magnetic, non-conductive, electromagnetic radiation. And it remains dormant under many chemical conditions. It can be cast to any complex shape. It is used in aircraft, boat, automobile sector, and large swimming pool, hot water tank, orthopedic and cast surfboard etc.
Properties of glass fiber:
Chemical resistance: It remains dormant under many chemical conditions. They resist most acids with the exceptions of hydrofluoric acid and phosphoric acid.
Thermal properties: Glass fibers having good thermal insulators because it has high ratio of surface area to weight. Softening point of glass fiber is 845°C and a melting point is 1135°C.
Mechanical properties: Fiber glass wire is more tensile strength than steel wire, even if both diameters are same and fiberglass wires are lighter weight than steel. Fiberglass has a specific resistance greater than steel. So, it is used to make high-performance.
Non rotting: Glass fiber does not rot easily and remains unaffected by the action of rodents and insects.
Dimensional stability: glass fiber has a low coefficient of linear expansion.
Dielectric permeability: This property of glass fiber makes it suitable for electromagnetic windows.
Moisture absorption: Glass fiber having low moisture absorption.
Highly economical: It is a cost-efficient choice compared to other similar materials.
Types of glass fiber forms:
Glass fiber is classified on the basis of chemical compositions and properties, its following types given below:
A-Glass: It is also known as alkali glass. It has good electrical resistivity.
C-Glass: It has good resistance to chemical impact and also known as chemical glass.
D-Glass: It is also called borosilicate glass having low dielectric constant foe electrical applications.
E-Glass: Alumina-calcium-borosilicate glass with maximum alkali (2%).
AE-Glass: This is alkali resistant glass.
S-Glass: This is use in structural purpose and also known for its mechanical properties.
R-Glass: This one is corrosion resistant glass.
Applications of glass fiber:
Automotive industries: Glass fiber widely used in automotive sector. Almost every car has so many component made by glass fibers.
Aerospace and defense: Glass fiber is used in components of military as well as civilian airplanes.
Electric or electronic: High dielectric strength and relatively low dielectric constant make it good electrical insulator.
Infrastructure and building constructions: Glass fiber enhance the strength and performance of the under earth infrastructure. Glass fiber is used in roofing and modern buildings.
Medical products: Glass fiber is ideal for making bed, support structure and covers for radiology safety equipment.
Advantages and disadvantages:
Advantages: It could be mould any shape.
It is non-corrosive and rot-resistance.
High ratio of strength to weight.
It is low maintenance, good electrical insulator, anti-magnetic, fire resistant, high melting point, and weatherproof.
Disadvantages: It has poor ventilation.
It needs to be re-gel coated about every five years and can result in airborne fibers which may be an issue to asthma sufferers.
In this article discussed about the glass fiber and its several properties. It’s application in several fields and about advantages and disadvantages. Glass fiber has so many classifications, briefly discussed above.