Reinforcement of rubber by cords is crucial for many applications such as high-pressure hoses and conveyor belts. However, the largest application of cord-rubber composites is the tyre. The carcass of the tyre contains a network of cords that gives the tyre its strength. Not only the type of cord material that is used determines the performance, but also the way the cords are positioned in the carcass, as described in Chapter 1. Since the cords absorb most of the forces where the tyre is subjected to, a good adhesion between cord and rubber is an absolute requirement. The coating which the cords need to obtain sufficient adhesion to rubber compounds is called the Resorcinol Formaldehyde Latex (RFL) treatment. Despite the importance of good adhesion and the fact that this RFL-treatment has been widely applied since the Second World War, and no better alternative has been found till today, the mechanism by which the adhesion is obtained has remained unclear. The relatively few publications on this technique are described in Chapter 2. Most of the research described was rather empirical: the many factors involved when dipping the cords in a RFL-dip and curing it to rubber were varied and their influence on the adhesion was described. However, most of the publications lack a mechanistic approach to obtain more fundamental knowledge about this technique. With new fibre materials introduced in recent years, in particular aramid fibres, there is a renewed interest in the mechanism of adhesion of RFL-treated cords to rubber in order to utilise the properties of these high-performance fibres to their full extent in rubber compounds. In this thesis, an attempt is made to elucidate the adhesion between RFL-treated cords and rubber using a more systematic approach to obtain a mechanistic view on the chemical and physical processes involved.
|Award date||18 Jan 2008|
|Place of Publication||Enschede|
|Publication status||Published - 18 Jan 2008|