The current prosthetics available in industry today tend to be fairly costly. This does not provide adequate healthcare options to patients in developing countries or to patients of lower income. Unfortunately, it is these people who will need prosthetics as they are more vulnerable to amputation. This project wishes to determine if the mechanical properties of a short-fiber, coir-epoxy composite are sufficient enough to allow to be used as a load-bearing, prosthetic material. This project will explore the effects of three manufacturing processes (natural curing, heated curing, and compression mold pressing) and of the volume-to-fiber composition on the mechanical performance of the composite. Comparisons to other biofiber composites, and to current prosthetic materials in the market will be made. If this material proves to be successful, it can be used as a cheaper, greener alternative prosthetic material, which can will allow for greater accessibility to those in need of prosthetics.

Coir-Epoxy Composite Analysis and Comparison as Load Bearing Material

Advisor: Dr. Richard Chung

Authors: Quynh Trinh, Ken Saclolo, Juan Oliveras