An Empirical Relationship to Predict Damages in Carbon Fiber Reinforced Composites under Extreme Thermal Cycling Conditions


Article Preview

Carbon Fiber Reinforced Composites are presently used in satellites structure for better performance during extreme thermal cycling space environment. These materials display unexpected failure because the satellite periodically goes into and out of the earth shadow region on orbit, leading to a change in its surface temperature. As the coefficient of thermal expansion of carbon fibers is an order of magnitude lower than that of the polymer matrix, repeated thermal stresses are generated in the composites under the alternative temperature field, resulting in damage to the materials and a decrease in mechanical properties. The main objective of this study is to develop an analytical model to predict the damage produce in the composites subjected to extreme thermal loading. These thermal loading also causes the material to release strain energy. The results are presented in terms of strain produced during thermal cycling and also in the process of delamination.



Key Engineering Materials (Volumes 531-532)

Edited by:

Chunliang Zhang and Liangchi Zhang




F. N. Siddiqui et al., "An Empirical Relationship to Predict Damages in Carbon Fiber Reinforced Composites under Extreme Thermal Cycling Conditions", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 531-532, pp. 153-158, 2013

Online since:

December 2012




[1] Haeng-Ki Lee&SrdanSimunovic, Constitutive Modeling and Impact Simulation of Random Carbon Fiber Polymer Matrix Composites for Automotive Applications, Computer Science and Mathematics Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, 1998 Society of Automotive Engineers, Inc.


[2] Sang-Guk Kang, Dong-Hoon Kang, &Chun-Gon Kim, Real-time monitoring of transverse thermal strain of carbon fiber reinforced composites under long-term space environment using fiber optic sensors, NDT & E International, July 2009, Vol. 42, p.361.


[3] H. Bansemir& O. Haider, Fiber composite structures for space applications—recent and future developments, Germany, January 1998, Vol. 38, Issue 1, p.51–59.


[4] Hui Mei, Laifei Cheng, Litong Zhang, &YongdongXu, Modeling the effects of thermal and mechanical load cycling on a C/SiC composite in oxygen/argon mixtures, China, October 2007, Composites Vol. 45, Issue 11, p.2195–2204.


[5] Z.J. Wu, D. Brown, &  J.M. Davies, An analytical modeling technique for predicting the stiffness of 3-D orthotropic laminated fabric composites, Engineering Composites Research Centre, University of Ulster UK, June 2002, Vol. 56, Issue 4, p.407.


[6] G. Korb, J. Kora´b & G. Groboth, Thermal expansion behaviour of unidirectional carbon-fibre-reinforced copper-matrix composites, Austria, 12 March 1998, Composites Part A, pp.1563-1567.


[7] M.C. Lafarie-Frenot, S. Rouquiéa, N.Q. Ho, &V. Bellenger, Comparison of damage development in C/epoxy laminates during isothermal ageing or thermal cycling, Composites Part A , Applied Science and Manufacturing , April 2006, Issue 4, Vol. 37, p.662.


[8] Mark Russell-Stevens, Richard Todd, &Maria Papakyriacou, The effect of thermal cycling on the properties of carbon fibre reinforced magnesium composite, Materials Science and Engineering: A , April 2005, Issues 1-2, Vol. 39, p.249–256.


[9] Cecelia H. Park& Hugh L. McManus, Thermally induced damage in the composite laminates: Predictive methodology and experimental investigation, Composites, Vol. 56, Issue 10, 1996, p.1209–1219.


[10] Irene J. Beyerlein&Chad M. Landis, Shear-lag model for failure simulations of unidirectional fiber composites including matrix stiffness, Mechanics of Materials, May 1999, Vol. 31, Issue 5, p.331–350.