ESR10 - Enhancement of the durability of bio-composites

Name: Alexandros Prapavesis                  

ESR no.: 10

Description of the IRP:

The research is focused on developing reliable methods to counter the sensitivity of natural fiber based composites in hygrothermal exposure, thus increasing their lifetime and their reliability in long-term applications. It is well established in the literature that tackling sufficiently this problem could be a major step towards the widespread use of the cost-cutting and environmentally friendly bio-composites in high performance applications. In practice, our goal is to decrease the diffusivity and moisture content in equilibrium of these materials, which will lead to decrease in the hygroscopic damage induced due to debonding of the interface and micro-cracking of the matrix due to swelling of the natural fibres when exposed in humid environments. Particular emphasis is put on thermoplastic matrices, where often adhesion issues exist.


  • Natural fibre composites, thermoplastic matrices, moisture absorption, hygroscopic damage, fibre-matrix interface

About the ESR:

After obtaining my engineering diploma from the Dept. of Materials Science & Engineering of the University of Ioannina, Greece, I decided to open up new horizons and pursuit a PhD because I found that conducting research is not only fundamentally challenging but also truly fascinating.

Aside from my research interests, I enjoy doing physical activities and sports, as well as travelling because it allows me to get in touch with other cultures and get different perspectives of the world. 


Contact information:

  • Alexandros (Alex) Prapavesis
  • KU Leuven, Department of Materials Engineering
  • Room 03.59, Kasteelpark Arenberg, 44 – box 2450, 3001 Leuven
  • Phone:+32 16 37 60 35
  • Email: