ABSTRACT Composites based on jute fabrics and polypropylene was fabricated by heat-press molding technique. The mechanical properties of the composites such as tensile strength, tensile modulus, bending strength, bending modulus and impact strength were measured in dependence of fiber contents. In order to improve fiber-matrix interaction, jute fabrics were treated with aqueous solutions of K2Cr2O7 (0.005-0.05% w/v). Composite prepared with 0.02% K2Cr2O7 treated jute fabrics showed the highest values of the mechanical properties. Thermogravimetric (TG/DTG) data of PP, jute fabrics and composites showed that thermal degradation temperatures of composites shifted to higher temperature regions compared to PP or jute fabrics. Treatment of jute fabrics improved the thermal stability of the composite considerably. Scanning electron microscopic images of tensile fractured sides of untreated and treated composites illustrated that better fiber-matrix interfacial interaction occurred in treated composite. The relative tendency of water absorption of both untreated and treated composites was also explored.
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