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The use of natural fibre composite materials has already been explored succesfully in the automotive sector.
These light weight-high strength natural fibre materials have obvious advantages in the environmental context and the answer the calls for a green environment.
The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research of South Africa (CSIR) teamed up with the giant European aircraft maker, AIRBUS, to explore, for the first time, the use of natural fibre composite materials in aircraft interiors.
The natural fibre composite sandwich materials will be manufactured using Nomex honeycomb cores imported from Germany and natural fibre composite materials grown in the Eastern Cape region of South Africa.
The aircraft industry is quite delicate and maximum safety levels have to be adhered to.
It is imperative that these natural fibre composite materials pass certain safety tests before they can be accommodated in the aerospace industry.
The work in this dissertation is centred in two aspects of the natural fibre: flexural response and delamination modelling.
The underlying mathematical theory is developed in an uderstandable step-by-step manner and the user should find it resourceful.
The author is a holder of a BSc Hons (UZ) and an MSc Applied Mathematics for the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
Currently studying for a PhD in Applied Mathematics with NMMU.
The work has been presented at the International Aerospace Symposium of South Africa 2010 among other conferencies.
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