A novel approach to characterization of composite polymer matrix materials for integrated computational materials engineering approaches

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics


This work presents a novel methodology for polymer matrix material characterization as a function of the degree of cure by performing mechanical testing of stoichiometric and off-stoichiometric formulations of the Hexion EPON 862/EPIKURE W (DGEBF/DETDA) system, a thermosetting epoxy resin with applications in the aerospace industry. Computational process models rely upon thorough material characterization in order to accurately predict the accumulation of mechanical performance-affecting residual stresses within composite materials. During the manufacturing of polymer matrix composites, the constituent matrix material transitions in phase from liquid to solid via chemical crosslinking of monomers known as the curing process. This phenomenon is an autocatalytic chemical reaction, presenting a challenge in the traditional characterization procedure, where mechanical properties are continuously evolving as a function of the degree of cure that is overcome in this work. Cure kinetics are characterized for each formulation through the Differential Scanning Calorimetry technique. Resin strength is determined for the stoichiometric cases through uniaxial, quasi-static tension testing. The resulting mechanical properties for the EPON 862/EPIKURE W system are discussed as a function of the degree of cure to serve as inputs for high-fidelity computational process models within the Integrated Computational Materials Engineering framework.

Publication Title

AIAA Scitech 2021 Forum



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