What are the fiber types
Fiber is a thread that can be made of minerals, metals and synthetics.
The most well-known fiber types are the following: steel fiber, basalt fiber, polypropylene (polymer) fiber, fiberglass, polyester fiber, carbon fiber.
Primarily fiber is designed to increase the strength characteristics of various materials (concrete, asphalt, plastics, paints, mastics, etc.) and is used as a reinforcing additive.
All types of fibers have different technical characteristics and, as a consequence, have their advantages and disadvantages.
It is made of basalt continuous fiber, which is made in its turn by extrusion of basalt melt rock through spinning platinum-rhodium dies. The complex threads produced in this way are subsequently cut into specified lengths.
It is made of synthetic thermoplastic material from propylene gas and is presented in the form of coarse helical segments or fine chopped threads.
The standard broken glass is the raw material for fiberglass. Limestone, sand and auxiliary components are also used. Fiberglass production technology in its main stages is similar to the production of basalt fiber.
Steel fiber is manufactured from low carbon steel wire. It can be produced in the form of straight lines, waves and anchors. Steel fiber can be also made of steel sheet, in this case its cross-section is rectangular.
Benefits of basalt fiber:
- increases the strength of concrete up to 55% in comparison with non-reinforced concrete;
- significantly increases the strength of most of the known materials made by mixing the mass and its subsequent hardening;
- increases the service life and turnaround time of concrete and asphalt concrete;
- does not corrode and has an extremely high alkali resistance;
- has a thermal expansion coefficient very close to that of concrete;
- a huge range of operating temperatures (–260 … +680°С), an increase of the concrete fire resistance;
- does not delaminate in concrete (maintains a homogeneous structure) and creates a full-fledged effect of 3D-reinforcement;
- does not dissolve in concrete, unlike some other fiber types.
Disadvantages of basalt fiber:
- when kneading, use protective equipment to prevent prickly monofilaments from getting on the skin. However, for manual dosing operations, a moistened fiber with a 12% humidity content, which significantly reduces fiber spread.
Basalt fiber is made of basalt stone. Basalt is an igneous rock formed as a result of lava outpouring on the surface of the earth in prehistoric times. The unique properties of this rock were influenced by a chain of processes of earth’s crust formation – the melting and solidification of the Earth’s mantle. Basalt is distributed all over the globe, but there are only several deposits, the raw materials of which are suitable for the extrusion of endless basalt thread. The material for the Technobasalt® fibers is mined in one of the largest such deposits, which is located in Ukraine.
Basalt is characterized by high resistance to aggressive environments, has the highest corrosion resistance and does not lose its properties over time. Basalt fiber inherits all these qualities and has a low cost compared to carbon fibers, alkali resistant AR glass and polypropylene.
Basalt fiber is produced from basalt crushed stone melt at a temperature of 1500 °C. The structure of Technobasalt® fiber has a uniform quality due to its natural origin and a smoothly running production cycle.
The most suitable fiber for concrete matrix is the fiber with the following parameters:
- diameter 16-18 microns,
- length 12 or 24 mm (depending on the aggregate fraction).
Do not hesitate to ask your fiber supplier questions as the reinforcement material is a critical component for the strength of the mix that you are using. For the correct selection of fiber, it is also recommended clarifying the sizing type (reagent).
Glass fiber, including alkali-resistant, is an artificial fiber made of an inorganic glass melt.
Fiberglass is conventionally divided into two large groups: E-glass for general purposes (the most common) and HMS-glass (high modulus glass of increased strength). There are also many varieties of fiberglass, distinguished by specific characteristics: E-glass (electrical), S-glass (strength), AR-glass (alkali resistant), etc.
Fiberglass has high strength characteristics, in many respects similar to basalt fiber, however, the choice should be approached very responsibly, since the material is artificial, and it is worth checking with the manufacturer which brand of fiber was used in production process, since most fiberglass types have low alkali resistance (except special alkali-resistant glass fiber).
In addition, fiberglass fiber has a significantly lower tensile strength, a lower modulus of elasticity, and the Poisson’s ratio indicates that it is a more fragile material than basalt fiber and steel.
Polypropylene fiber is a synthetic thermoplastic non-polar material, a polymer of propylene gas (a chemical compound at a high molecular weight level).
Polypropylene fiber, as well as other fiber types, is a material for dispersed concrete reinforcement (BSF is a building microreinforcing fiber).
The advantages of polypropylene fiber:
- low specific gravity;
- a large amount of fibers in one kilogram.
Disadvantages of polypropylene fiber:
- low tensile strength of the fiber in comparison with fiber made of other materials (there is a very significant variation in this characteristic from different manufacturers);
- high coefficient of fiber elongation (depending on the manufacturer – up to 250%), which casts doubt on the reinforcing ability of the material;
- low alkali resistance;
- low modulus of elasticity (up to 35 GPa);
- low temperature resistance of polypropylene fibers (melting temperature is 160°C);
- lack of fire resistance (ignition temperature 320ºС);
- wide quality variation depending on different manufacturers;
- during grinding of a concrete surface, polypropylene fiber is pulled out of concrete, which can be avoided by using additional technological operations, for example, by applying topping during the construction of an industrial floor;
- the material accumulates in the upper part of the concrete volume due to its low density, and is not evenly distributed.
Steel (metal) fiber
Steel fiber is produced from three types of materials: low-carbon steel wire according to GOST 3282; cold-rolled steel sheet according to GOST 19904 or from steel slabs according to GOST 14-17-17-90., Steel fiber can be of different types by its shape: in the form of straight segments, wave, anchor.
Wave fiber is a piece of steel wire, different in carbon saturation, which have a wavy shape.
Anchor fibers are pieces of steel wire with a diameter of 0.3 mm to 1.2 mm and a length of 10 to 54 mm with bent or flattened ends.
If the anchor fiber is made of steel sheet, then its cross-section is usually rectangular.
Metal fiber has a number of significant disadvantages:
- high weight of the product;
- low corrosion resistance;
- low adhesion to the concrete matrix;
- steel fiber can reach the surface of concrete (including the cases of erosion), which can threaten the safety of the structure and elements interacting with the surface;
- to increase the corrosion resistance of steel fiber, it is hot-dip galvanized or made of alloy steels, which leads to its inevitable price rise;
- the material sinks into the lower part of the concrete volume due to its high density, and is not evenly distributed.
of different fiber types
|Index||Basalt Fiber||Glass Fiber||Polypropylene Fiber||Steel (metal) Fiber|
|Material||basalt fiber||fiberglass||polypropylene||steel wire (low or high carbon)|
|Tensile strength, MPa||1 100 – 1 400||350 – 530||170 – 260||360 – 420|
|Elastic modulus, GPa||79–110||до 50||до 35||190–200|
|Elongation at break,%||1.5–3.1||до 4.5||20 – 250||3.0 – 4.0|
|Fiber diameter, mm||0.009 – 0.018||0.013 – 0.015||0.010 – 0.025||0.500 – 1.200|
|Fiber length, mm||5…100||5…50||5…24||30…50|
|Melting point, ºС||1 450 – 1 480||860||160||1 550|
|Resistant to corrosion and alkalis||very high||high (only for alkali-resistant fibers)||low||low|
Technobasalt is ready to provide your company with the required amount of basalt materials for independent testing of the technology and evaluation of the properties of the finished product.
Technobasalt® Fiber range
The assortment of basalt fibers is presented in different lubricants, in different thickness and length of monofilament. The assortment includes dozens of positions, allowing you to use fiber in any technology.
Where is Technobasalt® Fiber used
You can learn more about the use of basalt fiber in concrete, industrial floors, road surfaces and other technologies by following the link
A few words from our team
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We produce a decent, high-quality product. The long history of our company is the best confirmation of this.
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