Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) Honeycomb Air Cushion Combined with Polylactic Acid (PLA) Nonwoven Fabric for Impact Protection
Honeycomb structures are widely used in various engineering fields, including construction, the auto industry, packaging, the aerospace industry, medicine, and sports. The hexagon cells generate excellent structures and reduce material waste. Honeycomb structures have very good mechanical properties and are low cost. Nonwoven fabric is widely used in many applications because the manufacturing process for nonwoven fabric is easy and fast. In this study, Polylactic Acid (PLA) nonwoven fabric and Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) honeycomb air cushion (TPU-HAC) materials were combined in a sandwich structure for impact protection. The PLA fibers and low-melting-point PLA fibers were used as raw materials to create PLA nonwoven fabric. The PLA fibers and low-melting-point PLA fibers were mixed at weight ratios of (10%, 20%, 30%, 40%, 50%). The mixed fibers were processed using needle punching and thermal bonding to create PLA nonwoven fabric. Additionally, the TPU-HACs were layered to generate various thicknesses (2/8/10 mm, 4/6/10 mm, 6/4/10 mm, 8/2/10 mm). The layered TPU-HAC materials was clamped between two PLA nonwoven fabrics to form a sandwich structure. Impact resistance was assessed using a falling- weight impact-resistance machine. Experimental findings indicate that impact resistance of the sandwich structure of the TPU-HAC materials improved when thin TPU-HAC material was placed on the thick TPU-HAC material. This study demonstrates that the sandwich structure of TPU-HAC materials as excellent impact absorption.
C. H. Lee et al., "Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) Honeycomb Air Cushion Combined with Polylactic Acid (PLA) Nonwoven Fabric for Impact Protection", Advanced Materials Research, Vols. 55-57, pp. 401-404, 2008