Scaled-Up Continuous Carbon Nanotube Yarn Unidirectional Composite Laminates with Carbon Nanotube Aerogel

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



A method for manufacturing scaled-up carbon nanotube (CNT) composite laminates was developed for potential ultra-high structural performance composite applications. Laminates were fabricated with continuous CNT yarn, CNT aerogel, and aerospace resin matrices by filament winding. A densification procedure was developed to achieve ultra-high reinforcement concentration. CNT laminates were compared to IM7/8552 in an intermediate scale tensile testing procedure. The CNT yarn laminate achieved a specific tensile strength of 1.38±0.10 GPa/(g/cm3) and specific tensile modulus of 179±34 GPa/(g/cm3). The CNT yarn/aerogel laminate reduced the coefficient of variation in the specific modulus from 0.19 to 0.05, which is comparable to the IM7/8552 laminate which had 0.03. This reduction in variation was accomplished without compromising on strength or stiffness, achieving a specific tensile strength of 1.41±0.06 GPa/(g/cm3) and specific tensile modulus of 183±10 GPa/(g/cm3). This exceeds the specific modulus of the unidirectional IM7/8552 laminate by 73% while maintaining equivalent strength. These results are an important step to demonstrate the industrial viability of CNT composites for structural applications.

Publication Title

AIAA SciTech Forum and Exposition, 2024