The aim of this study is to review three-dimensional (3D) braided fabrics and, in particular, to provide a critical review of the development of 3D braided preform structures and techniques.
3D braided preforms are classified based on various parameters depending on the yarn sets, yarn orientation and intertwining, micro-meso unit cells and macro geometry. Biaxial and triaxial two-dimensional (2D) braided fabrics have been widely used as simple- and complex-shaped structural composite parts in various technical areas. However, 2D braided fabric has size and thickness limitations. 3D braided fabrics have multiple layers and no delamination due to intertwine-type out-of-plane interlacement. However, the 3D braided fabrics have low transverse properties and they also have size and thickness limitations. On the other hand, various unit cell base models on 3D braiding were developed to analyze the properties of 3D braided structures. Most of the unit cell base models include micromechanics and numerical techniques.
Multiaxis 3D braided fabrics have multiple layers and no delamination. The in-plane properties of multiaxis 3D braided fabrics may be enhanced due to the bias yarn layers. However, the multiaxis 3D braiding technique is at an early stage of development and needs to be fully automated.