Study of the effect of unidirectional carbon fiber in hybrid glass fibercarbon fiber sandwich box beams

Date of Award


Degree Name

M.S. in Materials Engineering


Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering


Advisor: Steven L. Donaldson


This study investigated the effect of carbon fiber placed in different amount at different location in a square box beam. In total eight designs were selected and three beams were fabricated for each design using hand layup and vacuum bagging technique. The beams were tested using a four point bending test. The stiffness were calculated and compared with all glass fiber beams. The beams were analyzed using finite element method in Abaqus. It was found that the location of the carbon fiber has an effect on the increase in the stiffness of the beam. Beam with 29.6% carbon fiber by volume gave maximum increase in stiffness. The maximum load carried by the beams showed a different trend. It was observed that the maximum load carrying capacity decreased with increase in the amount of carbon fiber. Carbon fiber effectiveness index (ratio of percentage increase in stiffness of beam and volume percent of carbon fiber) was calculated for each design and it was found that the design D3; which has one layer of carbon fiber on the top and bottom face utilized carbon fiber most effectively.


Composite construction Testing, Glass fibers Mechanical properties, Carbon fibers Mechanical properties, Box beams Design and construction, Loads (Mechanics), Structural analysis (Engineering), Engineering; Materials Science; composite beams; box beams; hybrid composites; glass fiber carbon fiber hybrid composites; hybrid beams; finite element analysis of composites using Abaqus; square beams

Rights Statement

Copyright © 2013, author