UCLA Extension

Aerospace Composite Materials

Using advanced composite materials improves performance and saves weight on numerous aircraft structures, such as the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350. Composites also are used extensively in other industrial sectors, such as wind turbines, oil and natural gas exploration and production, natural gas and hydrogen vehicle storage tanks, high-speed and precision machinery, etc. Due to the anisotropic nature of typical laminated composite materials, the analysis and design of composite structures are considerably more complex than those of their metallic counterparts. This course provides participants with a broad knowledge and interdisplinary perspective on aerospace composite materials, which includes key fiber and matrix materials, manufacturing processes, nondestructive evaluations, and mechanics and analysis methods. A fundamental understanding of the structure, properties, and mechanics of composite materials is needed in order to permit their efficient use in lightweight structural design applications.

The course benefits design engineers, analysts, materials engineers and scientists, manufacturing engineers, quality assurance engineers, engineering managers, R&D engineers and scientists, product development engineers, and anyone else interested in the application of composite materials for the development of efficient lightweight structural designs. Applications apply to such industries as aerospace/defense, power generation and storage, automotive, process industries, medical equipment, and sports equipment.

Course Materials

The text, Composite Materials: Engineering and Science, Second Edition, Krishan K. Chawla (Springer, 1998), and participants receive lecture notes on the first day of the course. The notes are for participants only and are not for sale.

Coordinator and Lecturer

Jenn-Ming Yang, PhD, Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, UCLA. Professor Yang has over 25 years of research and teaching experience in fiber-reinforced composite materials for aerospace structural and propulsional applications. He has performed research in composite processing and process simulation, microstructural characterization and mechanical testing, micromechanical modeling, and life prediction. He received the Presidential Young Investigator’s Award from the National Science Foundation in 1990 and has been the PI/Co-PI in various federal funded research programs, including NSF, FAA, AFOSR, and NASA. Professor Yang has published over 180 technical papers in composite materials and high-temperature materials for aerospace structures. He received his PhD degree from the University of Delaware in 1986.

Course Program

Development and Applications of Composite Materials

  • Course overview
  • General characteristics of composite materials
  • Composites vs. metals
  • Applications of composite materials
  • Future trends, including nanocomposites

Processing and Selection of Reinforcing Fibers

  • Glass fibers
  • Carbon fibers
  • Kevlar and other polymer fibers
  • Ceramic and inorganic fibers
  • Statistical analysis of fiber strength
  • Fiber surface treatment

Processing and Properties of Polymer Matrix Composites

  • Fundamentals of composite curing
  • Bag molding process
  • Compression molding
  • Pultrusion
  • Filament winding
  • Resin transfer molding
  • Manufacturing processes for thermoplastic composites
  • Nondestructive evaluation methods

Processing and Properties of Metal and Ceramic Matrix Composites

  • Manufacturing processes for continuously reinforced MMCs
  • Manufacturing processes for discontinuously reinforced MMCs
  • Manufacturing processes for continuously reinforced CMCs
  • Behavior of brittle matrix composites

Elastic Analysis of Unidirectional Lamina and Multiplayer Laminates Composites

  • Fiber-matrix interaction in a unidirectional lamina
  • Elastic properties of a lamina
  • Lamination theory
  • Interlaminar stresses

Strength and Failure Behavior of Composites

  • Strength analysis of a unidirectional lamina
  • Failure prediction in a unidirectional lamina
  • Failure prediction for unnotched laminates
  • Failure prediction in notched laminates
  • Fatigue analysis of composite materials

For more information contact the Short Course Program Office:
shortcourses@uclaextension.edu (310) 825-3344 | fax (310) 206-2815