L-Lysine templated CaCO₃ precipitated to flax develops flowery crystal structures that improve the mechanical properties of natural fibre reinforced composites

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Parvez Alam, Pi Fagerlund, Piotr Hägerstrand, Jim Töyrylä, Shahrouz Amini, Maryam Tadayon, Ali Miserez, Vinay Kumar, Mahdi Pahlevan, Martti Toivakka
Publication year: 2015
Journal: Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing
Journal acronym: COMPOS PART A-APPL S
Volume number: 75
Start page: 84
End page: 88
Number of pages: 5
ISSN: 1359-835X
eISSN: 1878-5840


We describe how the mechanical properties of natural fibre composites can be improved by precipitating coral-like coatings to the surfaces of reinforcing fibres. We consider three amino-acid templates (L-lysine, glycine and beta-alanine) on calcium carbonate growth to natural fibres. L-Lysine forms reticulate flower-like crystals, beta-alanine forms globular crystals and glycine forms blocky crystals. These coralised fibres are used to reinforce styrene butadiene rubber and when compared against untreated-fibre reinforced composites; we find that at sufficiently high concentrations L-lysine templated mineral coatings improve composite strength by more than 100%. Contrarily, beta-alanine and glycine templated mineral coatings do not improve the composite strength by more than ca. 60% and ca. 40% respectively. Molecular dynamics simulations elucidate the attachment mechanisms for each amino acid and the highest potential is in the L-lysine templated crystals. Finite element analyses reveal the success of L-lysine templated coatings is due to a heightened fibre tractive resistance.


Fibre/matrix bond, Fibres, Polymer-matrix composites (PMCs)

Last updated on 2019-11-11 at 05:16