Optimization of the Thermal Shock Resistance of Carbon-Carbon Composites

    Published: Jan 1975

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    A three-dimensional rule of mixtures model was developed to calculate the room-temperature thermal and mechanical properties of carbon-carbon composites whose constituents have anisotropic properties. The model was used, along with the properties of different carbon fibers and pyrocarbon matrices, to determine the fiber-matrix combination, constituent volume fractions, and constituent orientations that maximize expected composite thermal shock resistance of heat shields. The results indicate that a composite having a low volume fraction of high-modulus carbon fibers, arranged in a 3D array, and coated with anisotropic, heat-treated pyrocarbon matrix, will have the maximum thermal shock resistance. Confidence in the model was established by good agreement between model predictions and experimental data on actual carbon-carbon composites.


    carbon, composite materials, thermal shock, mechanical properties, carbon fibers, pyrocarbon matrix, models, reentry materials

    Author Information:

    Guess, TR
    Staff member, Sandia Laboratories, Albuquerque, N. Mex.

    Butler, BL
    Staff member, Sandia Laboratories, Albuquerque, N. Mex.

    Committee/Subcommittee: D30.08

    DOI: 10.1520/STP32311S

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