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A study of the impact behaviour and the post-impact residual strength of fully biodegradable composites is presented in this work. To this end, low-velocity impact tests and compressive residual strength tests were carried out on flax/PLA laminates. The results were compared with carbon/epoxy laminates, showing some important advantages in terms of absorbed energy and normalized residual strength. The reason was attributed to different energy absorption mechanisms; the main failure mode in flax/PLA laminates is fibre failure while residual strength of carbon/epoxy laminates is dominated by delaminations. (C) 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.