Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program



Mechanical Engineering

Major Professor

Schilling, Paul

Second Advisor

Verges, Melody

Third Advisor

Hui, David

Fourth Advisor

Herrington, Paul


Graphite epoxy composites are being used in aerospace industry and spacecraft applications for their light weight and high strength. As a matter of fact these materials also have some disadvantages like damage which is hazardous when used in cryogenic application. Composite materials IM7/977-2, IM7/5555 and IM7/5276-1 are of interest for the aerospace industry and this research concentrates on study of microcracking, delamination and other defects in the [0/90]s composite laminates of the above materials. These materials were uni-axially tested to pre-determined stress levels and the damages in the material were recorded in the form of microcrack density at different stress levels. In this research work the use of X-Ray Microtomography has proven to be an excellent tool to characterize the crack connectivity and damage information three dimensionally. Dye penetrant technique was also used in this work to enhance the visibility of the cracks.


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