MSE 597C Characterization of Advanced Composite Materials

Sem. 1, Class 3, cr.3. Prerequisites: Junior to Graduate standing.

The characterization of advanced composite materials is a combined lecture/laboratory course in which polymeric composite laminates will be fabricated of carbon fiber epoxy and subjected to classical test methods appropriate to the determination of the anisotropic, thermoelastic properties. Properties measured will include thermal expansion coefficients, anisotropic elastic constants, biaxial strength properties and interlaminar fracture strengths. The autoclave processing of composite laminates will be discussed and the consolidation, degree of cure and glass transition temperature of the polymeric matrix will be modeled. Microscopic analysis of the composite will be carried out to observe microstructure and measure composition fractions. Lectures will precede each experiment. Click here for more information.


The primary goal of this course is the introduction of the student to the characterization methods for the anisotropic properties of advanced composite materials consisting of high performance fibers suspended in polymeric matrices.


Upon completion of this course the student is expected to be familiar with test methods for advanced composite materials and to be able to carry out these tests to produce property data for a specific material system such as carbon fiber epoxy with a fiber volume fraction. These test methods include: 1) fabrication of test specimens, 2) fiber volume fraction, 3) lamina longitudinal tensile tests, 4) lamina shear test, 5) lamina off-axis tensile test, 6) lamina flexural test, 7) lamina thermoelastic test, 8) laminate tensile test, 9) laminate thermoelastic test, 10) laminate notch strength test, 11) mode I interlaminar fracture test, 12) mode II interlaminar fracture test.


Two one-hour lectures and one, three-hour lab per week.


Professor R. Byron Pipes

Pipes Characterization of Advance