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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware

Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic


Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Module 06-03-01a
Materials and Hardware

Aircraft Materials
Composite and Non-Metallic other than Wood and Fabric
Characteristics

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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware
Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Table of contents

I. CHARACTERISTICS, PROPERTIES AND IDENTIFICATION OF COMMON COMPOSITE AND NON-METALLIC MATERIALS, OTHER THAN WOOD,
USED IN AIRCRAFT ................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 3
1. CLASSIFICATION OF COMPOSITE MATERIALS: .............................................................................................................................................................. 3
1.1. Classification based on matrix metals: ............................................................................................................................................................................. 4
1.2. Classification based on the material structure: ................................................................................................................................................................. 7
II. SEALANT AND BONDING AGENTS ..................................................................................................................................................................................... 17
1. ADHESIVE JOINTS: ............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 17
1.1. Joint composition: ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 17
1.2. Types of bonds: .............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 18
1.3. Types of stresses: ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 18
1.4. Failures of adhesive bonds: ............................................................................................................................................................................................ 19
2. TERMINOLOGY USED IN COMPOSITE MATERIALS: ...................................................................................................................................................... 20
3. TYPES OF ADHESIVES: ...................................................................................................................................................................................................... 21
4. STRUCTURAL ADHESIVE BONDING: ............................................................................................................................................................................... 23
4.1. Acrylic adhesives: ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 23
4.2. Anaerobic adhesives: ...................................................................................................................................................................................................... 24
4.3. Cyanoacrylate adhesives: ............................................................................................................................................................................................... 24
4.4. Epoxy adhesives: ............................................................................................................................................................................................................ 24
4.5. Hot melt adhesives: ........................................................................................................................................................................................................ 24
4.6. Methacrylate adhesives: ................................................................................................................................................................................................. 25
4.7. Polyurethane adhesives:................................................................................................................................................................................................. 25
III. TENSILE PROPERTIES OF COMPOSITE MATERIALS ....................................................................................................................................................... 26
1. ELASTIC PROPERTIES OF ALIGNED CONTINUOUS FIBER COMPOSITES: ................................................................................................................ 26
2. COMPARISONS OF TENSILE STRENGTH OF COMMON STRUCTURAL MATERIALS: ............................................................................................... 29

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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware
Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

I. CHARACTERISTICS, PROPERTIES AND IDENTIFICATION OF COMMON COMPOSITE AND NON-METALLIC


MATERIALS, OTHER THAN WOOD, USED IN AIRCRAFT

Aerospace engineers already use a variety of composite materials in the construction of aircraft.

Composites are combinations of two materials in which one of the materials, called the reinforcing phase, is in the form of fibers, sheets, or particles, and are
embedded in the other materials called the matrix phase.

The reinforcing material and the matrix material can be metal, ceramic, or polymer. Composites are used because overall properties of the composites are
superior to those of the individual components.

For example: polymer/ceramic composites have a greater modulus than the polymer component, but aren't as brittle as ceramics. The following are some of
the reasons why composites are selected for certain applications:

 High strength to weight ratio (low density high tensile strength),

 High creep resistance,

 High tensile strength at elevated temperatures,

 High toughness.

Typically, reinforcing materials are strong with low densities while the matrix is usually a ductile, or tough, material. If the composite is designed and
fabricated correctly, it combines the strength of the reinforcement with the toughness of the matrix to achieve a combination of desirable properties not
available in any single conventional material. The downside is that such composites are often more expensive than conventional materials.

1. CLASSIFICATION OF COMPOSITE MATERIALS:

In composite material the two phases are the matrix phase and the dispersed phase. They have bulk properties significantly different form those of any of
the constituents.

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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware
Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
 Matrix phase:
The primary phase, having a continuous character, is called matrix. Matrix is usually more ductile and less hard phase. It holds the dispersed
phase and shares a load with it.

 Dispersed (reinforcing) phase:


The second phase is embedded in the matrix in a discontinuous form. This secondary phase is called dispersed phase.

Dispersed phase is usually stronger than the matrix, therefore it is sometimes called reinforcing phase.

Many of common materials (metal alloys, doped ceramics and polymers mixed with additives) also have a small amount of dispersed phases
in their structures, however they are not considered as composite materials since their properties are similar to those of their base
constituents (physical properties of steel are similar to those of pure iron).

There are two classification systems of composite materials.

 One of them is based on the matrix material (metal, ceramic, polymer).

 The second is based on the material structure.

1.1. Classification based on matrix metals:

 Metal Matrix Composites (MMC)

Metal Matrix Composites are composed of a metallic matrix (aluminum, magnesium, titanium, iron, cobalt, copper) and a dispersed ceramic
(oxides, carbides) or metallic (lead, tungsten, molybdenum) phase.

These materials use a metal such as aluminium as the matrix, and reinforce it with fibers such as silicon carbide.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Example of Titanium MMC

 Ceramic Matrix Composites (CMC)

Ceramic Matrix Composites are composed of a ceramic matrix and embedded fibers of other ceramic material (dispersed phase).

Used in very high temperature environments, these materials use a ceramic as the matrix and reinforce it with short fibers, or whiskers such
as those made from silicon carbide and boron nitride.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Carbon fiber reinforced silicon carbide (C/SiC)


 Polymer Matrix Composites (PMC)

Polymer Matrix Composites are composed of a matrix from thermoset (Unsaturated Polyester (UP), thermoplastic (Polycarbonate (PC),
Polyvinylchloride, Nylon, Polystyrene) and embedded glass, carbon, steel or Kevlar fibers (dispersed phase).

These are the most common. Also known as FRP (Fiber Reinforced Polymers or Plastics), these materials use a polymer-based resin as the
matrix, and a variety of fibers such as glass, carbon and aramid as the reinforcement.
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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Glass fiber reinforced polymer sheet

1.2. Classification based on the material structure:


 Particle (reinforced) composites:
Particle composites consist of a matrix reinforced by a dispersed phase in form of particles.

 Composites with random orientation of particles.

 Composites with preferred orientation of particles. Dispersed phase of these materials consists of two-dimensional flat platelets
(flakes), laid parallel to each other.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Particles used for reinforcing include ceramics and glasses such as small mineral particles, metal particles such as aluminum, and
amorphous materials, including polymers and carbon black.
Particles are used to increase the modulus of the matrix, to decrease the permeability of the matrix, to decrease the ductility of the matrix.
Particles are also used to produce inexpensive composites.
Reinforcers and matrices can be common, inexpensive materials and are easily processed.
 An example of particle reinforced composites is an automobile tire which has carbon black particles in a matrix of polyisobutylene
elastomeric polymer.
 Another example is spheroidized steel where cementite is transformed into a spherical shape which improves the machinability of
the material.
 Another example for particle-reinforced composite is concrete where the aggregates (sand and gravel) are the particles and cement
is the matrix.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
Particle reinforced composites support higher tensile, compressive and shear stresses.

 Fiber (reinforced) composites:


Reinforcing fibers can be made of metals, ceramics, glasses, or polymers that have been turned into graphite and known as carbon fibers.
Fibers increase the modulus of the matrix material.

The strong covalent bonds along the fiber’s length give them a very high modulus in this direction because to break or extend the fiber the
bonds must also be broken or moved.
Fibers are difficult to process into composites which makes fiber-reinforced composites relatively expensive.
The arrangement or orientation of the fibers relative to one another, the fiber concentration, and the distribution all have a significant
influence on the strength and other properties of fiber-reinforced composites.
Applications involving totally multidirectional applied stresses normally use discontinuous fibers, which are randomly oriented in the matrix
material.
Consideration of orientation and fiber length for a particular composites depends on the level and nature of the applied stress as well as
fabrication cost.
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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
Production rates for short-fiber composites (both aligned and randomly oriented) are rapid, and intricate shapes can be formed which are not
possible with continuous fiber reinforcement.
 E-glass composite

E-glass composite is a popular fiber made primarily of silica oxide, along with oxides of aluminum, boron, calcium and other compounds.

Named for its good electrical resistance, E-glass is strong yet low in cost, and accounts for over 90% of all glass fiber reinforcements,
especially in aircraft radomes, antennae and applications where radio-signal transparency is desired.

E-glass is also used extensively in computer circuit boards where stiffness and electrical resistance are required.

In addition to E-glass, several other types of glass can be used for composite reinforcement. The most popular are high-strength glass and
corrosion-resistant glass.

 S-glass composite:

Higher strength glass is generally known as S-type glass in the United States, R-glass in Europe and T-glass in Japan. S-glass was
originally developed for military applications in the 1960s, and a lower cost version, S-2 glass, was later developed for commercial
applications.

 High-strength-glass composite:

High-strength glass has appreciably higher amounts of silica oxide, aluminum oxide and magnesium oxide than E-glass. S-2 glass is
approximately 40-70% stronger than E-glass.

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Fiberglass

 Laminated composites:
When a fiber reinforced composite consists of several layers with different fiber orientations, it is called multilayer (angle-ply) composite.

Figure below show a laminate made of three plies. The fiber orientation in each ply is different. Varying the orientation of the plies and
changing the thickness and consequently the proportion of fiber orientation of the laminate can attain an infinite variety of laminate
properties.

The laminate can be optimized for stiffness in any direction, thermal stability, shear stiffness, and a variety of other mechanical properties.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Laminated composite

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
 Carbon epoxy laminated composites:

Carbon epoxy laminated composites

 Sandwich composites:
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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Sandwich composite
A sandwich structured composite is a special class of composite materials that is fabricated by attaching two thin but stiff skins to a
lightweight but thick core.

The core material is normally low strength material, but its higher thickness provides the sandwich composite with high bending stiffness with
overall low density.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

 Remark: Carbon sandwich composite honeycomb:

A Carbon sandwich composite honeycomb is a material used as a core material in sandwich structured composite structures.

The material takes its name from its visual resemblance to a bee's honeycomb - a hexagonal sheet structure.

A wide variety of materials can be formed into a honeycomb composite.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

 Composite materials in the new generation of aircrafts (B 787 – Dreamliner):

Note that only 12% by weight was used in B 777.

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
II. SEALANT AND BONDING AGENTS

1. ADHESIVE JOINTS:

Bonding is a process of joining two or more solid parts with an adhesive substance.
1.1. Joint composition:

The materials of the joined parts (adherents, substrates) may be different or similar.

The material of the adhesive layer is commonly a polymer (natural or synthetic). Thickness of the adhesive layer does not usually exceed 0.5 mm.
 Structure of adhesive joint:
Adhesive joint generally consists of two substrate surfaces with the adhesive material filled the gap between them. However the
adhesive layer is not uniform. Besides the part of the adhesive layer, properties of which are not affected by the substrate, there are two
boundary layers, which have been changed by impurities and products of reactions at the substrate surfaces.

 Boundary layer is a part of the adhesive layer adjacent to the substrate surface.

Structure of an adhesive joint

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
1.2. Types of bonds:
Common adhesive bond types include butt, scarf, lap, and strap joints.

1.3. Types of stresses:


Designers must consider the stresses on the joint as well as assembly issues when choosing a joint type.

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

Adhesive joints may be able to withstand higher loads because they spread them over a greater area.

1.4. Failures of adhesive bonds:

There are three possible mechanisms of failure of adhesive bonding:

 Structural failure - internal failure of a substrate material in a region close to the joint.

 Adhesive failure - interfacial failure resulted in separation of one of the substrate from the adhesive layer.

 Cohesive failure - internal failure of the adhesive layer.

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
Mechanism of cohesive failure is determined by cohesion - internal intermolecular attraction force holding the material in a united state.

2. TERMINOLOGY USED IN COMPOSITE MATERIALS:

It is a part of the adhesive layer adjacent to the substrate surface.

GENERAL TERMS USED IN COMPOSITES

Adherend An adherend is the solid material in the adhesive joint other than the adhesive (also referred to as substrate)

Adhesion Adhesion is the process by which two surfaces are held together by interfacial forces (surface attraction) or
mechanical interlocking.

Adhesive An adhesive is a substance which is capable of holding materials together in a useful fashion by means of surface
attraction.

Surface attraction results from placing a thin layer of adhesive between two objects.

Bond line The bond line is the space or gap between two substrates which contains the adhesive.

Cohesive failure Cohesive failure is a failure mode where the failure is within the body of the adhesive, i.e. when adhesive is seen on
both substrates in the same location

Composite Composite is a general term for an assembly of dissimilar materials used together to give greater strength than the
individual components would on their own, or the same strength or lighter.

GRP (glass reinforced plastic) is an example of a modern day composite where resin and fibers are mixed together
to give superior strength performance.

Cure When an adhesive cures, it is converted from a liquid to a solid state. This may be accomplished by cooling, loss of
solvents or internal chemical reaction. Curing generally implies some type of physical or chemical change in the
adhesive, while hardening or melting is reversible.

Rheology Rheology is the ability of a material to flow and deform. Adhesives with good rheology flow easily and break cleanly

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
at the end of a bead.

Stiffness Stiffness is a materials ability to resist deformation when a load is applied.

Strain Strain is the elastic deformation resulting from stress.

Stress Stress is the internal resistance to change in shape and size.

Substrate A substrate is a material, which is held by an adhesive. Substrate is a generic term for objects that are being
bonded.

Substrate failure Substrate failure is a failure where the substrate fails itself before the adhesive bond.

Tension Tension is the stress resulting from pulling a material apart.

Thermoplastic A Thermoplastic is a material that will soften when exposed to heat and can be reworked or re shaped before
hardening when cooled.

Thermoset A Thermoset is a material that solidifies when cured by mixing and/or heating and, once cured, cannot be remelted
or remoulded.

Toughness Toughness is a measure of a materials ability to absorb energy.

Viscosity Viscosity is the resistance to flow or degree of thickening of a fluid.

Working time Working time is the time between mixing the two components and when the adhesive becomes no longer useable
i.e. skins over and will not ‘wet out’

Working time Wetting is the intimate contact of a liquid and a surface. Good wetting is only possible if there is good attraction
between the surface and the liquid. Proper wetting of a mating surface is essential for good bonding.

3. TYPES OF ADHESIVES:

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

TYPES OF ADHESIVES

Heat-cured adhesives Any adhesive which must be heated to promote curing.

Holding adhesives Holding adhesives are used to hold surfaces together, but not permanently. They do not have to withstand
a great deal of force. Adhesive tape is a good example of a holding adhesive

Hot melt adhesives Hot melt adhesives are applied in the molten state and then harden. The adhesive substance is melted,
applied to the surface, and then the parts are joined. Once the adhesive cools and solidifies, the joint is
complete.

Instant adhesives Any adhesive which cures within seconds to minutes

Locking adhesives Locking adhesives or sealants are used to prevent the loosening of threaded parts. Locking adhesives are
placed on the threads of a bolt to prevent it from becoming loose from vibration.

Pressure sensitive adhesives Pressure sensitive adhesives form bonds easily when pressure is applied. Pressure sensitive adhesives
are used on self-sealing envelopes and double-sided tape. The joint is made with very little pressure.

Retaining adhesives Retaining adhesives are used to prevent the twisting or sliding of non threaded parts. Retaining adhesives
are very similar to locking adhesives except they are used on non-threaded parts.

Sealing adhesives Sealing adhesives are used to prevent the passage of air, water, oil, etc. between two surfaces. The
caulking around windows is an example of a sealing adhesive.

Structural adhesives Structural adhesives are capable of withstanding a significant load. The term ‘significant load’ has never
been defined, but the implication is that the adhesive must be able to withstand a great deal of stress. In
fact, it could be said that in the absence of unnaturally high forces, the substrates could be considered to
be permanently joined.

Ultraviolet adhesives Any adhesives which cure when exposed to UV light.

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

4. STRUCTURAL ADHESIVE BONDING:

Structural or performance adhesives are load-bearing adhesives. That is they add strength to the products being bonded. There are approximately ten
adhesive families commonly referred to as structural adhesives: Acrylic, Anaerobic, Cyanoacrylate, Epoxy, Hot Melt, Methacrylate, Phenolic, Polyurethane,
Solvent cement and Tapes.

The seven most commonly used are:

 Acrylic,

 Anaerobic,

 Cyanoacrylate,

 Epoxy,

 Hot Melt,

 Methacrylate,

 Polyurethane.

4.1. Acrylic adhesives:

They have formulations that tolerate dirtier and less prepared surfaces generally associated with metals. Acrylics are two-part adhesives, the resin is
applied to one surface and an accelerator or primer to the other.

The two parts can be pre-applied and later mated.

Once mated, handling strength is typically achieved in a few minutes. Curing can be completed at room temperature. Newer versions of acrylics are
now available in two component formulations than are mixed together prior to application.

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
4.2. Anaerobic adhesives:

Anaerobic adhesives are one of the most easily applied structural adhesives. Because the curing mechanism is trigged by deprivation of oxygen
(hence the name ‘anaerobic’ or ‘without air’), anaerobic adhesives will not cure prematurely.

These adhesives are based on acrylic polyester resins and are produced in viscosities ranging from thin liquids to viscous thixotropic pastes. Although
they have high cohesive strength, they have low adhesive strength and are not suited to permeable materials. Anaerobics do not fill gaps well and may
require primers. They are generally used as thread fasteners.

4.3. Cyanoacrylate adhesives:

Cyanoacrylate adhesives are also easily applied and offer extremely fast cure rates. Cyanoacrylates are relatively low viscosity fluids based on acrylic
monomers and, when placed between closely fitting surfaces, some will cure to a strong joint in two to three seconds.

4.4. Epoxy adhesives:

Epoxy Adhesives have been available longer than any engineering adhesive and are the most widely used structural adhesive. Epoxy adhesives are
thermosetting resins which solidify by polymerisation and, once set, will soften but not melt on heating.

Two part resin/hardener systems will solidify on mixing (sometimes accelerated by heat), while one part materials require heat to initiate the reaction of
a latent catalyst. Epoxies offer very high shear strengths, and can be modified to meet a variety of bonding needs.

Generally epoxy bonds are rigid: they fill small gaps well with little shrinkage.

4.5. Hot melt adhesives:

Hot melt adhesives have moved out of their traditional applications into areas of low-stress product assemblies.

They form flexible and rigid bonds, achieve 80% of their bond strength within seconds, bond permeable and impermeable materials, and usually
require no elaborate surface preparation. Hot melts are insensitive to moisture and many solvents, but they soften at high temperatures.

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Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics
4.6. Methacrylate adhesives:

Methacrylate adhesives provide a unique balance of high tensile, shear and peel strengths with the maximum resistance to shock, stress and impact
across a wide temperature range.

Methacrylates can generally be used without surface preparation when joining plastics, metals and composites.

They are two component-reactive materials based on methyl methacrylate monomer that, when mixed together, have a controlled cure speed based
on the appropriate application process.

Methacrylates are tolerant to off ratio mixing and remain strong and durable under severe environmental conditions. They resist water and solvents to
form an impenetrable bond.

4.7. Polyurethane adhesives:

Polyurethane adhesives are named after the polymer type formed on completion of the reaction. The adhesives are usually two component, one side
is always isocyanate based, the other formulated from one of several core reactants often amines or glycols.

They are known for toughness and flexibility even at low temperatures. They have fairly good shear strength and excellent water and humidity
resistance, although uncured urethanes are sensitive to moisture and temperature.

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Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

III. TENSILE PROPERTIES OF COMPOSITE MATERIALS

1. ELASTIC PROPERTIES OF ALIGNED CONTINUOUS FIBER COMPOSITES:

The stress in the fiber and the stress in the matrix are generally not the same.

We can now use Hooke's Law, which states that the stress (or Force) experienced by a material is proportional to the strain (or deflection). This applies as
long as the stresses are low (below the elastic limit - we'll come to that soon) and the material in question is linear elastic, which is true for metals, ceramics,
graphite and many polymers but not so for elastomers (rubbers).

=εE

where E is the elastic modulus,  the stress of the material and ε the strain.

For compatibility, the strain must be the same in both the fibers and the matrix otherwise holes would appear in the ends of the composite as we stretched it.

 Elastic-brittle, matrix fails first:


The first and simplest case that we shall consider is that where the both the fiber and the matrix are linear elastic to failure but the matrix fails
at a lower strain that the fiber.

Strain is the important factor in determining the failure strength of the composite when testing parallel to the fibers because both the
fiber and the matrix experience the same strain.

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When the strain in the composite reaches the fracture strain of the matrix, the matrix will fail.
What actually happens to the composite as the matrix breaks depends on how the composite is being loaded and how much fiber is present
in the composite. There are two different, but distinct ways that load is imposed on a material, constant deflection and constant load.

 Loading under "constant deflection":


In a conventional tensile test the material being tested is actually stretched, i.e. a slowly increasing displacement is applied to one end of the
material, the other end remains fixed in place.

What is measured is the resistance that the material is imposing against being stretched. If part of the material breaks, like the matrix in the
composite is just about to do, the deflection at that instant does not change. The fibers are still stretched by the same strain so the stress in

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the fibers remains as it was just prior to the matrix failing. Hence, the fibers will not break. However, the load will fall as will the stress on the
composite as a whole.

 Loading under "constant load":


In the real world, and cases where materials are tested by imposing slowly increasing loads, what happens when the matrix breaks differs
from the case of constant deflection loading.

Because the stress in the fibers increases, the strain in the fibers also increases and the material will exhibit an increase in deflection (strain)
with no additional increase in load. If the increased stress is higher than the failure strength of the fibers then the fibers will break, if not we
can continue to increase the load until the fibers break.

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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware
Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

2. COMPARISONS OF TENSILE STRENGTH OF COMMON STRUCTURAL MATERIALS:

There is a very large range of mechanical properties that can be achieved with composite materials. Even when considering one fiber type on its own, the
composite properties can vary by a factor of 10 with the range of fiber contents and orientations that are commonly achieved.

 Tensile strength of common structural materials:

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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware
Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

The comparisons that follow therefore show a range of mechanical properties for the composite materials.

The lowest properties for each material are associated with simple manufacturing processes and material forms (e.g. spray lay-up glass
fiber), and the higher properties are associated with higher technology manufacture (e.g. autoclave moulding of unidirectional glass fiber),
such as would be found in the aerospace industry.

 Tensile modulus of common Structural materials:

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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware
Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

The above figures clearly show the range of properties that different composite materials can display. These properties can best be summed up as
high strengths and stiffness combined with low densities. It is these properties that give rise to the characteristic high strength and stiffness to weight
ratios that make composite structures ideal for so many applications.

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AeroGATES: PART 66 courseware 06 – Materials and Hardware
Category  A  B1  B2  B3 03 - 01 - Aircraft materials – Composite and non-metallic
Level  1  2  3 a - Characteristics

This is particularly true of applications, which involve movement, such as cars, trains and aircraft, since lighter structures in such applications play a
significant part in making these applications more efficient.

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