Determining the tensile strength, tear resistance, and stiffness of Adonidia merrillii (Manila palm tree) leaf sheaths

GHERVIC KYLE C. AGUILAR, BHOB ANDREEVE A. LIGNIG, ADRIAN CAHLIL EIZ G. TOGONON, XAVIER ROMY O. BRANA, and ALBERTO G. TANOY
Philippine Science High School – Western Visayas Campus, Brgy. Bito-on, Jaro, Iloilo City 5000, Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute, Philippines


Abstract
Use of natural plant fibers has increased in the past decades from uses such as ropes, textiles, paper-making, to reinforcement for polymer composites due to its advantages over hazardous synthetic fibers with comparable strength. Adonidia merrillii, commonly known as Manila palm tree, have not yet been fully explored of its fibrous properties. Its leaf sheaths, a fiber sheet-like material, has no known uses aside from being used as burning fuel. The research aimed to profile the mechanical properties of A.merrillii leaf sheaths such as the tensile strength, stiffness, and tear resistance, in comparison to the commercially available textile, canvas. Raw leaf sheaths were first tested to see if it can compare to textile, before applying any treatments. The leaf sheaths were washed, cut, and dried before testing. Due to limitations of the study, only the tensile and tear test yielded results. It was found out that the leaf sheath had a higher average tensile strength and stiffness than that of canvas. The leaf sheaths however were found to have weaker tearing force along the ridges. The leaf sheaths can be an alternative textile in the market.

Keywords: fiber sheet, textile, canvas, mechanical properties, testing

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