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133
American Transactions on
Engineering & Applied Sciences
http://TuEngr.com/ATEAS
Characterization of Mechanical, Thermal, and
Electrical Properties of Carbon Fiber Polymer
Composites by Modeling
Zhong Hu
a*
, Xingzhong Yan
b
, James Wu
c
, and Michelle Manzo
c
a
Department of Mechanical Engineering, South Dakota State University, USA
b
Department of Electrical Engineering &Computer Science, South Dakota State University, USA
c
Electrochemistry Branch, NASA Glenn Research Center, USA
A R T I C L E I N F O
A B S T RA C T
Article history:
Received February 06, 2013
Received in revised form
March 06, 2013
Accepted March 08, 2013
Available online
March 11, 2013
Keywords:
Carbon Fibers
Polymer Composites
Physical Properties
Characterization
Finite Element Analysis
In this paper, the mechanical, thermal and electrical
properties of carbon fiber modified thermoplastic polyimide were
numerically analyzed by finite element analysis. A
threedimensional model was created, in which continuous carbon
fibers are aligning and paralleling to each other and uniformly
distributing in the polymer matrix. The behaviors of the composites
in two extreme situations, i.e., parallel or perpendicular to carbon
fiber direction, were simulated. The effects of the volume fraction
of carbon fiber content on the physical properties were investigated.
It shows clearly that carbon fibers significantly improve the
mechanical strength, and thermal and electrical conductivities. The
future work includes investigation of the physical properties of the
conductive network of the composites with random carbon fiber
orientation, and different fillers, such as graphite, and carbon
nanotubes.
2013 American Transactions on Engineering & Applied Sciences.
2013 American Transactions on Engineering & Applied Sciences.
134
Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
1. Introduction
Polymers are lightweight, flexible, resistant to heat and chemicals, and nonconductive and
transparent to electromagnetic radiation. Therefore, they are used in the electronics industry for
flexible cables, as an insulating film, and for medical tubing. Thus, they are not suitable for use as
enclosures for electronic equipment because they cannot shield it from outside radiation. Also they
cannot prevent the escape of radiation from the component. (Elimat et al. 2010; Navin and Deepak
2004) Several fillers can be added to the insulating polymeric matrix in order to achieve different
conductivity ranges for a variety of industrial applications. (Delmonte 1990; Neelakanta 1995)
Polyacrylonitrile (PAN)based carbon fibers (CFs) possess high stiffness and strength, low
expansion coefficient, and elevated thermal and electric conductivity measured along the fiber
direction. (Lei et al. 2008; Donnet et al. 1990; Park and Chou 2000; Chand 2000) Carbon fiber
(CF)/polymer composites are used in the aerospace industry on account of their highspecific
stiffness and strength, which are higher than in metallic materials. (Surendra et al. 2009)
Conducting polymers have been extensively studied because of their potential applications in
lightemitting devices, batteries, electromagnetic shield, and other functional applications.
(Anupama et al. 2010; Tsotra and Friedrich 2003; Tse et al. 1981) The ability of these composites
to serve as capacitors and other circuit element means that the structures is itself the electronics, so
that the electronics 'vanish' into the structure. (Luo and Chung 2001) In the case of continuous CF
polymermatrix composites, CFs are the conductors (resistors) and they can be intercalated to
become electron metals or hole metals. (Chung and Wang 1999) By having the electronics vanish
into the structure, space is saved. The space saving is particularly valuable for capacitors of large
capacitance in space applications. In addition to space saving, structural electronics have the
advantage of being mechanically rugged and inexpensive, since structural materials are
necessarily rugged and inexpensive. The use of a structure as a capacitor is particularly valuable in
conjunction with structures that are powered by solar cells, as the structure (capacitor) can be used
to store the electrical energy generated by the solar cells. (Luo and Chung 2001; Chung and Wang
1999; Zhu et al. 2011; Stoller and Ruoff 2010).
In this paper, the mechanical, thermal and electrical properties of CF modified polyimide (PI)
matrix composite will be numerically analyzed by finite element analysis (FEA). (Herakovich
1998; Minus and Kumar 2007; Fei et al. 2007) A threedimensional model will be created, in
*Corresponding author (Z. Hu). Tel/Fax: +16056884817/+16056885878. Email
address: Zhong.Hu@sdstate.edu. 2013. American Transactions on Engineering &
Applied Sciences. Volume 2 No. 2 ISSN 22291652 eISSN 22291660 Online
Available at http://TuEngr.com/ATEAS/V02/133148.pdf
135
which continuous CFs will be aligning and paralleling to each other and uniformly distributing in
the matrix. The behaviors of the composite in two extreme situations, i.e., parallel or
perpendicular to the CF direction, will be simulated. The effects of CF volumetric fraction on the
physical (mechanical, thermal, and electrical) properties will be investigated.
2. Modeling by Finite Element Analysis
Although the material properties for the composite are anisotropic, for each component (CF
filler or polymer matrix) they could be treated as isotropic. Assuming that each set of properties
(mechanical, thermal, or electrical properties) is independent. Therefore, each set of the
properties can be evaluated separately. For mechanical properties, a linear and elastic stressstrain
relationship is assumed. Therefore, for each element of one kind material (CF filler or polymer
matrix), the structural governing equation is (ANSYS Inc. 2012)
{o] = Ð
cI
]{e
cI
] (1)
where {o] is the stress vector, {e
cI
] is the elastic strain vector, and Ð
cI
] is the elastic stiffness
matrix. For thermal properties, the heat transfer governing equation of conduction at steadystate is
{I]
1
{q] = {I]
1
Ð
th
]{I]I = u (2)
where {q] is the heat flux vector, {I] is the vector operator, T is temperature, and Ð
th
] is the
thermal conductivity matrix. For electrical properties, the electromagnetic field governing
equations are matrix. For electrical properties, the electromagnetic field governing equations are
v × {E] = {[] +]
ðÐ
ðt
¿ ; v × {E] = ]
ðB
ðt
¿ ; v · {B] = u; v · {Ð] = p
c
(S)
where v × is curl operator, v · is divergence operator, {E] is the magnetic field intensity vector,
{[] is the total current density vector, {Ð] is the electric flux density vector, t is time, {E] is the
electric field intensity vector, {B] is the magnetic flux density vector, and ρ
e
is the electric charge
density.
Therefore, each element formulations can be developed and the equations for each element can
136
Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
be assembled into global matrix for the entire domain of the composite (including both CF filler
and polymer matrix). In this work, a commercial FEA software ANSYS was used. A
threedimensional element SOLID223, i.e., a 3D 20node highorder accuracy coupled–field
(structural, thermal, and electrical) solid element was adopted. The isotropic properties of each
material component were assumed. PANbased carbon fibers with filament size of 5μm in
diameter are chosen as polymeric matrix filler and polyimides as polymeric matrix. The physical
properties of both materials are listed in Table 1. (Herakovich 1998; Minus and Kumar 2007; Fei at
al. 2007; Ayish and Zihlif 2010; Dupont Kapton 2010).
Table 1: Physical properties of polyimide film and carbon fibers.
Materials
Modulus
of
Elasticity
(GPa)
Poisson
Ratio
Density
(kg/m
3
)
Thermal
Expansion
Coefficient
(10
6
/K)
Thermal
Conductivity
(W/m⋅K)
Specific
Heat
(J/kg⋅K)
Electrical
Resistivity
(Ω⋅m)
Dielectric
Constant
Polyimide
Film
2.5 0.34 1,420 17 0.10 1,090 1.5×10
15
3.4
Carbon
Fibers
310 0.2 1,800 0.5 12 965 0.15×10
4
2000
The threedimensional solid model is shown in Figure 1, in which the cylindrical components
represent CFs and the cubic volume is the polymeric matrix, and zaxis represents the CF
orientation and xy plane is perpendicular to the CF orientation. The dimensions of the solid model
are represented by L (length in xaxis) × W (width in yaxis) × H (height in zaxis). The FEA
meshes are shown in Figure 2. The dimensions of the model in the simulations, in terms of CF
volumetric fraction, are listed in Table 2.
Figure 1: 3D solid model of the composite. Figure 2: 3D FEA meshes of the composite.
*Corresponding author (Z. Hu). Tel/Fax: +16056884817/+16056885878. Email
address: Zhong.Hu@sdstate.edu. 2013. American Transactions on Engineering &
Applied Sciences. Volume 2 No. 2 ISSN 22291652 eISSN 22291660 Online
Available at http://TuEngr.com/ATEAS/V02/133148.pdf
137
For modeling the modulus of elasticity in zaxial direction (CF direction), the uniaxial tensile
testing along zaxial direction is conducted, in which the bottom face (z=0) is fixed and the top face
(z=H) is pulled 0.1% (within elastic deformation region) in +zaxial direction (i.e., zaxial strain
ε
z
=0.001). For symmetric purpose, the displacement in xaxial direction on the face of x=0 is
constrained (u
x
=0 on the face of x=0), and the displacement in yaxial direction on the face of y=0 is
also constrained (u
y
=0 on the face of y=0). The zaxial forces on the top face (z=H) are
accumulated as F
z
, so that the average stress in zaxial direction, σ
z
, can be calculated. The modulus
of elasticity in zaxial (CF) direction, E
1
, is calculated.
Table 2: The dimensions of the model in terms of CF volumetric fraction.
CF Volume Fraction
(%)
CF Diameter
(μm)
Length (xaxis)
(μm)
Width (yaxis)
(μm)
Height (zaxis)
(μm)
10 5 84.07 56.05 28.02
20 5 59.45 39.63 18.82
30 5 48.54 32.36 16.18
40 5 42.04 38.02 14.01
50 5 37.60 25.07 12.53
Figure 3: Displacement u
x
under zaxial tension
(ε
z
=0.001).
Figure 4: Displacement u
y
under zaxial
tension (ε
z
=0.001).
E
1
=
c
z
s
z
=
P
z
Lws
z
(4)
Poisson ratio in xaxis (ν
12
) or yaxis (ν
13
) under this uniaxial tensile test can also be calculated
u
12
= 
s
x
s
z
; u
13
= 
s
j
s
z
(S)
138
Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
where the average strain in xaxial and yaxial directions, ε
x
and ε
y
, are calculated as (as shown
in Figures 3 and 4)
e
x
=
] ] u
x
d¡dz
j=W
j=0
z=H
z=0
wH
(on x = I face) (6)
e
¡
=
] ] u
j
dxdz
x=L
x=0
z=H
z=0
wH
(on y = w face) (7)
For modeling the modulus of elasticity in xaxial direction, E
2
, (perpendicular to CF direction),
the uniaxial tensile testing along xaxial direction is conducted. The corresponding boundary
conditions are applied, i.e., the leftfront face (x=0) is fixed and the rightback face (x=L) is pulled
0.1% (within elastic deformation region) in +xaxial direction (i.e., xaxial strain ε
x
=0.001). For
symmetric purpose, the displacement in yaxial direction on the face of y=0 is constrained (u
y
=0 on
the face of y=0), and the displacement in zaxial direction on the face of z=0 is also constrained
(u
z
=0 on the face of z=0). The similar calculation steps can be adopted for calculating the average
stress and strain, σ
x
and ε
y
, Modulus of elasticity E
2
, and Poisson ratio ν
23
, as shown in Figures 5
and 6,
E
2
=
c
x
s
x
; u
23
= 
s
j
s
x
(8)
Figure 5: Displacement u
x
under xaxial tension
(ε
x
=0.001).
Figure 6: Displacement u
y
under xaxial tension
(ε
z
=0.001).
For modeling the thermal conductivity in zaxial direction (CF direction), the bottom face
(z=0) is assigned with temperature of 20°C and the top face (z=H) is assigned with temperature of
21°C (1°C difference between two faces). The equivalent thermal conductivity in zaxial direction,
*Corresponding author (Z. Hu). Tel/Fax: +16056884817/+16056885878. Email
address: Zhong.Hu@sdstate.edu. 2013. American Transactions on Engineering &
Applied Sciences. Volume 2 No. 2 ISSN 22291652 eISSN 22291660 Online
Available at http://TuEngr.com/ATEAS/V02/133148.pdf
139
k
1
, is calculated as
k
1
= 
H
Lw(1
z=H
1
z=0
)
] ] q
z
JxJy (on
x=L
x=0
¡=w
¡=0
z = E face) (9)
where q
z
is the heat flux in zaxial direction, and (T
z=H
 T
z=0
) is the temperature difference between
bottom face and top face. The similar steps can be adopted for calculating the equivalent thermal
conductivity in xaxial direction (perpendicular to CF direction), k
2
, as shown in Figures 7 and 8.
Figure 7: Heat flux (W/m
2
) vector distribution under
temperature difference (1°C) in zdirection.
Figure 8: Heat flux (W/m
2
) vector distribution
under temperature difference (1°C) in xdirection.
Similar to the thermal conductivity calculation, for modeling the electrical conductivity in
zaxial direction (CF direction), the bottom face (z=0) is assigned with voltage of 0 volt and the top
face (z=H) is assigned with voltage of 0.1 volt. The equivalent electrical conductivity in zaxial
direction, κ
1
, is calculated as
«
1
= 
H
Lw(v
z=H
v
z=0
)
] ] i
z
JxJy (on
x=L
x=0
¡=w
¡=0
z = E face) (1u)
where i
z
is the current density in zaxial direction, and (V
z=H
–V
z=0
) is the voltage difference between
bottom face and top face. The similar steps can be adopted for calculating the equivalent electrical
conductivity in xaxial direction (perpendicular to CF direction), κ
2
.
140
Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
Figure 9: Displacement u
z
under zaxial tension
(ε
z
=0.001).
Figure 10: Stress σ
z
(MPa) under zaxial tension
(ε
z
=0.001).
Figure 11: Strain ε
x
under xaxial tension (ε
x
=0.001,
10%CF).
Figure 12: Strain ε
x
under xaxial tension
(ε
x
=0.001, 50%CF).
Figure 13: Stress σ
x
(MPa) under xaxial tension
(ε
x
=0.001, 10%CF).
Figure 14: Stress σ
x
(MPa) under xaxial tension
(ε
x
=0.001, 50%CF).
3. Results and Discussion
The effects of CF volume fraction on the physical properties of the composite are investigated.
Figure 9 shows zaxial displacement under zaxial tension, which gives a uniform distribution of
the displacement. Therefore, the strain in zaxial is constant throughout the entire domain. Figure
*Corresponding author (Z. Hu). Tel/Fax: +16056884817/+16056885878. Email
address: Zhong.Hu@sdstate.edu. 2013. American Transactions on Engineering &
Applied Sciences. Volume 2 No. 2 ISSN 22291652 eISSN 22291660 Online
Available at http://TuEngr.com/ATEAS/V02/133148.pdf
141
10 shows zaxial stress under zaxial tension. It shows clearly that the major load applied is taken
by CFs due to their much higher stiffness. These two figures are useful for analyzing modulus of
elasticity, E
1
, in CF direction. Figures 1114 show xaxial strain and stress distribution under
xaxial tension for 10%CF and 50%CF, respectively. It can be seen that the more the CF%, the
worse the uniformity of the distributions and the more the contribution from CFs. These four
figures are useful for analyzing modulus of elasticity, E
2
, in perpendicular to CF direction. Figures
15 and 16 show the moduli of elasticity, E
1
(in CF direction) and E
2
(perpendicular to CF
direction). It clearly shows that the modulus of elasticity measured in CF direction is linearly
increasing as CF% increasing, and the magnitude is primarily dominated by CF part due to its
much higher stiffness. It also shows a nonlinear increasing of the modulus of elasticity in
perpendicular to CF direction as CF% increasing due to the crosssection interaction increasing as
mentioned in Figures 1114. However, the magnitude is primarily dominated by polymer matrix
due to the discontinuity of CFs in the plane, therefore, the load has been transferred primarily
within polymer matrix, the softer component. In CF direction, the modulus of elasticity is much
higher than that in perpendicular to the CF direction.
Figure 15: Modulus of elasticity, E
1
, in CF direction. Figure 16: Modulus of elasticity, E
2
,
perpendicular to CF direction.
Figures 1720 show the strain distributions in the crosssection perpendicular to CF direction
under zaxial tension for evaluating Poisson ratios of υ
12
and υ
13
. It clearly shows that the more the
CF%, the worse the uniformity of the strain distribution is and the more the contribution by CF
component. Furthermore, the strain distribution in xaxial is symmetric to that in yaxial due to the
model symmetry in xaxis and yaxis.
0.0E+0
2.0E+4
4.0E+4
6.0E+4
8.0E+4
1.0E+5
1.2E+5
1.4E+5
1.6E+5
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
M
o
d
u
l
u
s
o
f
E
l
a
s
t
i
c
i
t
y
E
1
(
M
P
a
)
CF Volume Fraction
E1 in CF direction
2E+3
3E+3
4E+3
5E+3
6E+3
7E+3
8E+3
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
M
o
d
u
l
u
s
o
f
E
l
a
s
t
i
c
i
t
y
E
2
(
M
P
a
)
CF Volume Fraction
E2 perpendicular to CF direction
142
Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
Figures 2122 show yaxial strain distribution in the crosssection perpendicular to CF
direction under xaxial tension for evaluating Poisson ratio of υ
23
. It clearly shows again that the
more the CF%, the worse the uniformity of the strain distribution is the more the contribution from
CF component to the deformation.
Figure 17: Strain ε
x
under zaxial tension
(ε
z
=0.001, 10%CF).
Figure 18: Strain ε
x
under zaxial tension (ε
z
=0.001,
50%CF).
Figure 19: Strain ε
y
under zaxial tension
(ε
z
=0.001, 10%CF).
Figure 20: Strain ε
y
under zaxial tension (ε
z
=0.001,
50%CF).
Figure 21: Strain ε
y
under xaxial tension
(ε
x
=0.001, 10%CF).
Figure 22: Strain ε
y
under xaxial tension (ε
x
=0.001,
50%CF).
*Corresponding author (Z. Hu). Tel/Fax: +16056884817/+16056885878. Email
address: Zhong.Hu@sdstate.edu. 2013. American Transactions on Engineering &
Applied Sciences. Volume 2 No. 2 ISSN 22291652 eISSN 22291660 Online
Available at http://TuEngr.com/ATEAS/V02/133148.pdf
143
Figure 23 shows the Poisson ratios of the composites. υ
12
and υ
13
are the same due to their
symmetry in model. Furthermore, υ
12
and υ
13
are almost linearly decreasing as CF% increasing,
starting from 0.34 of the polymer matrix’s Poisson ratio (0% CF). υ
23
is nonlinearly decreasing and
decreasing from slower to faster as CF% increasing, starting from the same value.
Figure 23: Poisson ratios of the composites.
Thermal and electrical properties have the similar trends as the moduli of elasticity. Figures
2425 show the thermal and electrical conductivities, k
1
and κ
1
, in CF direction, respectively.
Again, CFs play the major role in these properties due to their much higher conductivities.
Figure 24: Thermal conductivity, k
1
, in CF
direction.
Figure 25: Electric conductivity, κ
1
, in CF direction.
0.20
0.22
0.24
0.26
0.28
0.30
0.32
0.34
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
P
o
i
s
s
o
n
R
a
t
i
o
CF Volume Fraction
υ12
υ13
υ23
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
E
q
u
i
v
a
l
e
n
t
T
h
e
r
m
a
l
C
o
n
d
u
c
t
i
v
i
t
y
k
1
(
W
/
m
K
)
CF Volume Fraction
k1 in CF direction
0.0E+0
5.0E+3
1.0E+4
1.5E+4
2.0E+4
2.5E+4
3.0E+4
3.5E+4
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
E
q
u
i
v
a
l
e
n
t
E
l
e
c
t
r
i
c
a
l
C
o
n
d
u
c
t
i
v
i
t
y
κ
1
(
S
/
m
)
CF Volume Fraction
κ1 in CF direction
144
Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
Figures 26 and 27 show the heat flux vector distributions under temperature difference in
xaxial direction for 10% CF and 50%CF, respectively. Similarly, Figures 28 and 29 show the
electrical field vector distributions under voltage difference in xaxial direction for 10%CF and
50%CF, respectively. Again, the more the CF%, the worse the uniformity of the distributions is.
Figure 26: Heat flux (W/m
2
) vector distribution
under temperature difference (1°C) in xdirection
(10%CF).
Figure 27: Heat flux (W/m
2
) vector distribution
under temperature difference (1°C) in xdirection
(50%CF).
Figure 28: Electric field (V/μm) vector distribution
under voltage difference (0.1V) in xdirection
(10%CF).
Figure 29: Electric field (V/μm) vector distribution
under voltage difference (0.1V) in xdirection
(50%CF).
Figure 30 shows the thermal conductivities, k
2
, in perpendicular to CF direction. The modeling
results are compared with the experimental data from reference (Fei et al. 2007). Both results are
showing the nonlinearity, and the conductivities are both nonlinearly increasing as CF%
increasing. The experimental data are lower than that by modeling, because the uniformity and
bonding condition (cavities existing) in the reality are getting worse as %CF increasing which
lowered the heat transfer rate. In contrast, in the modeling a perfect CF distribution and bonding
*Corresponding author (Z. Hu). Tel/Fax: +16056884817/+16056885878. Email
address: Zhong.Hu@sdstate.edu. 2013. American Transactions on Engineering &
Applied Sciences. Volume 2 No. 2 ISSN 22291652 eISSN 22291660 Online
Available at http://TuEngr.com/ATEAS/V02/133148.pdf
145
between the matrix and the filler are always assumed. Comparing Figure 30 with Figure 24, it can
be seen that the thermal conductivity in CF direction is about one order higher than that in
perpendicular directions due to the difference of the thermal conductivities between these two
components.
Figure 31 shows the electric conductivities, κ
2
, in perpendicular to CF direction, showing the
nonlinearity again. Comparing Figure 31 with Figure 25, it can be seen that the electric
conductivity in CF direction is about 19 orders higher than that in perpendicular to CF direction.
Because CFs are perfect conductor material, so even though 10% volume of CFs could perform
very well conduction if CFs could be well aligned and keep continuity in the conduction direction.
In contrast, the electric conductivity in perpendicular to CF direction is almost zero, due to the
perfect insulator behavior of the polymer and discontinuity of CFs, which could be treated as an
open circuit.
Figure 30: Thermal conductivity, k
2
, in
perpendicular to CF direction.
Figure 31: Electric conductivity, κ
2
, perpendicular
to CF direction.
4. Conclusion
Mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties of a carbon fiber modified polymeric matrix
composite have been numerically investigated by finite element modeling. A threedimensional
model has been created, in which continuous CFs were aligned and parallel to each other and
uniformly distributed in the polymer matrix. The behaviors of the composite in two extreme
situations, i.e., parallel or perpendicular to carbon fiber direction, have been analyzed. The effects
0.10
0.15
0.20
0.25
0.30
0.35
0.40
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6
E
q
u
i
v
a
l
e
n
t
T
h
e
r
m
a
l
C
o
n
d
u
c
t
i
v
i
t
y
k
2
(
W
/
m
K
)
CF Volume Fraction
k2 perpendicular to CF
direction
k2 from experimental data
(Lei et al. 2007)
0.5
1.0
1.5
2.0
2.5
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
E
q
u
i
v
a
l
e
n
t
E
l
e
c
t
r
i
c
a
l
C
o
n
d
u
c
t
i
v
i
t
y
κ
2
×
1
0

1
5
(
S
/
m
)
CF Volume Fraction
κ2 perpendicular to CF direction
146
Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
of the CF volume fraction on these physical properties have been investigated. It shows clearly that
CFs significantly improve the mechanical strength, thermal and electrical conductivity in CF
direction, these physical properties of the composites are primarily dominated by CF volume
fraction, and are linearly increasing as the CF volume fraction increasing, due to the much higher
performance of the CFs. The physical properties in perpendicular to CF direction are nonlinearly
increasing as the CF volume fraction increasing, but the absolute values are still very low due to the
low performance of the polymer matrix.
The future work should expand this modeling technique to look into the other physical
properties, the physical properties of the conductive network of the composites with random CF
orientation, different distribution of the filler, different CF length, different fillers, such as graphite,
and carbon nanotubes, and different crosssection of the fillers, the role of interfacial interaction
between the matrix and the filler, etc.
5. Acknowledgements
This work was supported by NASA EPSCoR Funds #NNX07AL04A, the State of South
Dakota, Mechanical Engineering Department and the College of Engineering at South Dakota
State University.
6. References
ANSYS Theory Reference Manual, ANSYS version 13.0, ANSYS Inc., 2012.
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Zhong Hu, Xinghong Yan, James Wu, and Michelle Manzo
Zhu YW, Murali S, Stoller MD, Ganesh K J, Cai WW, Ferreira PJ, Pirkle A, Wallance RM,
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Dr. Zhong Hu is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at South Dakota State University.
He received his BS and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Tsinghua University. He has worked
for railway manufacturing industry as a senior engineer, Tsinghua University as a professor, Japan
National Laboratory as a fellow, Cornell University, Penn State University and Southern Methodist
University as a research associate. He has authored over 80 peerreviewed publications in the
journals, proceedings and book chapters in the areas of nanotechnology and nanoscale modeling by
quantum mechanical/molecular dynamics (QM/MD); development of renewable energy related
materials; mechanical strength evaluation and failure prediction by finite element analysis (FEA) and
nondestructive engineering (NDE); design and optimization of advanced materials (such as
biomaterials, carbon nanotube, polymer and composites).
Dr. Xingzhong Yan is an assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science at South
Dakota State University. He received his BSc in Chemistry from Hunan Normal University, MSc in
Physical Chemistry from Chinese Academy of Science, and Ph.D. in Polymer Chemistry and Physics
from Sun Yatsen University. He has published over 60 peerreviewed papers in journals,
proceedings, and book chapters in the areas of solar cells, optical materials, femtosecond
spectroscopy, light and thermal management, optical sensors and electrical storage.
Dr. James Jianjun Wu joined the Electrochemistry branch of NASA in 2010. He earned his Ph.D. in
Chemistry from the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign and his Masters degree in
Chemistry/Analytical Chemistry from Rutgers University at New Brunswick, NJ. He holds another
Masters degree in Electrochemistry/Electroanalytical Chemistry, and a BS degree in
Chemistry/Chemical Engineering. Dr. Wu possesses postdoctoral experience and more than 10
years of industrial R&D experience prior to joining NASA. Dr. Wu has a varied experience base
with the research and development of catalysts, advanced energy storage materials and
electrochemical systems,
Michelle Manzo has served as Chief of the Electrochemistry Branch since 2005. In this role she
oversees the development of electrochemical systems for future NASA missions. She has been
involved in the development of batteries and fuel cells with an emphasis on aerospace batteries. She
began with the development of alkaline batteries, specifically nickelhydrogen, nickelcadmium,
silverzinc and nickelzinc and more has recently been addressing lithiumbased systems. Michelle
has been involved with interagency aerospace flight battery systems collaborations. Michelle has
received numerous awards and recognition throughout her career. She has authored or coauthored
more than 40 papers and has been recognized with various awards that include a NASA Exceptional
Achievement Medal, a NASA Exceptional Service Medal, an R&D 100 award, and NASA Group
Achievement Awards for the LiIon Battery Technology Team and the NASA Spacecraft Fuel Cell
Development Team.
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