Improvements in mechanical properties of a carbon fiber epoxy composite using nanotube science and technology Academic Article uri icon


  • Carbon fiber reinforced epoxy composite laminates, with strategically incorporated fluorine functionalized carbon nanotubes (f-CNTs) at 0.2, 0.3 and 0.5. weight percent (wt.%), are studied for improvements in tensile strength and stiffness and durability under both tension-tension (R=+0.1) and tension-compression (R=-0.1) cyclic loadings, and then compared to the neat (0.0. wt.% CNTs) composite laminate material. To develop the nanocomposite laminates, a spraying technology was used to deposit nanotubes on both sides of each four-harness satin weave carbon fiber fabric piece for the 12 ply laminate lay up. For these experimental studies the carbon fiber reinforced epoxy laminates were fabricated using a heated vacuum assisted resin transfer molding (H-VARTM®) method followed by a 2 soak curing cycle. The f-CNTs toughened the epoxy resin-fiber interfaces to mitigate the evolution of fiber/fabric-matrix interfacial cracking and delamination under both static and cyclic loadings. As a consequence, significant improvements in the mechanical properties of tensile strength, stiffness and resistance to failure due to cyclic loadings resulted for this carbon fiber reinforced epoxy composite laminate. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

author list (cited authors)

  • Davis, D. C., Wilkerson, J. W., Zhu, J., & Ayewah, D.

citation count

  • 124

publication date

  • January 1, 2010 11:11 AM


  • Carbon Fiber
  • Carbon Nanotubes
  • Composites
  • Cyclic Fatigue Loading
  • Epoxy
  • Functionalization