Theoretical and Experimental Studies on Mechanical Properties of Polyethylene/CNT Composites

Project: Research

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Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) of nano-scale diameters exhibit mechanical properties that are superior to any known material and hold substantial promise for a new class of strong and light materials. Due to their superior properties, CNTs are particularly attractive for multifunctional reinforcement materials in composite structures. For example, CNTs can sustain elongations as large as 30% without breaking. Thus, one of the potential applications is that they can be used as nano-scale reinforcement with high impact resistance and enhanced fracture toughness.Despite the potential impact of CNTs in engineering and other applications, there is still incomplete understanding of their mechanical behavior, which limits their adoption by industry. The researchers therefore propose a multi-disciplinary systematic study of CNT-based composites that will combine experiments, atomic-based simulations, theoretical algorithms, and numerical simulations. Once developed and verified, this project will be able to provide a comprehensive understanding for the analysis, design and manufacture of CNT-based composites. Such information will enable reliable practical applications of this new class of materials.The specific aims of this research project are:Development of a theoretical model for the investigation and design of a CNT-reinforced composite;Development of an innovative experimental process for fabrication of a CNT-based composite; andDevelopment of CNT-reinforced composites with high mechanical performance.


Project number9041348
Grant typeGRF
Effective start/end date1/07/081/03/11