Civil Engineering

Fabrication of composite using cactus and coconut fibre

In today’s world, the search for new materials with innovative mechanical properties and sustainability is important. In spite of many advantages, natural fibers have some disadvantages like low thermal resistance, high moisture absorption, etc.

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1. GIS

2. Structural & Foundation Analysis

3. CPM & BIM

4. Tall Building Design

5. Construction Technology (Career Building Course)

6. Foundation Design

7. Construction Project Management

8. Building Information Modelling

9. Seismic Design

10. Quantity Surveying

11. ETABS Software

12. Project Management with Primavera

This project describes the extraction of cactus fibers and the manufacturing of composite laminate using the extracted fibers. Mechanical characterization of the fiber and composite laminate is carried out under tensile and bending loading.

Project Description:

  • Coconut Fiber: Due to its lightweight it is widely used in industries. Coconuts are harvested after twelve months from the plant. These fibers are obtained by harvesting the fully matured coconuts when the nutritious layer surrounding the seed is ready to be processed.
  • Epoxy Resin: Epoxy resins are a class of reactive prepolymers and polymers that contain epoxide groups.
  • Composite: A material made up of 2 or more different materials known as composites. When combined, it produces material with different characteristics.

Extraction of cactus fiber:

Step 1: Cactus is harvested with care because it contains spines. So a very sharp knife is used with safety gloves to cut down its stem.

Step 2: The stem of cactus is made into smaller pieces and dipped into dilute HCL to extract the fibers.

Step 3: Outer layer of stem is cleaned to reduce the time of the extraction process. It takes 2 days to extract 60 % of fiber from the jelly substance that is present inside the stem. After 2 days, the jelly substance made separated from the fiber with hands using safety gloves then dried up in the sunlight. Again, the same process repeated for 2-3 times to extract 100 % of fiber the total process will take around 7-8 days.

Fabrication of Composite:

Step 1: Prepare the mold using GI sheet with the following dimensions length of 30 cm, breadth of 15 cm and height of 1 cm.

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Step 2: Place the epoxy and fiber into the mold in Zig-Zag alignment by layer-wise using hand layup method.

Step 3: Cactus fiber and Coconut fiber is placed alternatively one above the other and apply the resin for each layer.

Step 4: Keep the model in sunlight for 2-3 days to gain good strength.

Step 5: Cut the model into smaller pieces according to ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) standards.


  • Study of physical properties of cactus and coconut fibers
  • Collection of cactus and coconut fibers
  • Fiber extraction process
  • Fermentation process
  • Curing process
  • Fabrication and testing of composite


Three models are fabricated with the following ratios:

  • 50:30:20 (The specimen having a composition of 50% of epoxy, 30% of cactus fiber and 20% of coconut fiber.)
  • 50:25:25(The specimen having a composition of 50% of epoxy, 25% of cactus fiber and 25% of coconut fiber.)
  • 50:20:30 (The specimen having a composition of 50% of epoxy, 20% of cactus fiber and 30% of coconut fiber.)

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Fabrication of composite using cactus and coconut fibre
Skyfi Labs Last Updated: 2021-06-14

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