The Effect of Temperature on the Material Damping of Graphite/Epoxy Composites in a Simulated Space Environment

[+] Author and Article Information
G. T. Spirnak

U.S. Air Force, Kennedy Space Craft Center, Cape Canaveral, FL

J. R. Vinson

University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716

J. Eng. Mater. Technol 112(3), 277-279 (Jul 01, 1990) (3 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2903323 History: Received March 08, 1989; Online April 29, 2008


An experimental method for measuring material damping is described, which employs a free-free beam lightly supported at the nodes. A thermal space environment is simulated by measuring the material damping in air at temperatures ranging from −65°F to 225°F, and then subtracting out the effects of atmospheric damping. This method saves considerable time, cost and experimental difficulties associated with performing the experiments in a vacuum. Graphite/epoxy AS4/3501-6 composite beam specimens were tested. At room temperature, the [0°]12 composites were found to have an average damping ratio of 0.0556 percent. The [90°]12 composites were found to have an average material damping ratio of 0.55 percent. These data agree well with the theoretical models and experimental measurements performed in a vacuum. The material damping ratio is temperature dependent over the range −65°F to 225°F, increasing with increasing temperature. For the [0°]12 composite, the material damping ratio varies from 0.0397 percent at −65°F to 0.083 percent at 225°F. For the [90°]12 composite, the material damping ratio varies from 0.408 percent at −65°F to 0.860 percent at 225°F.

Copyright © 1990 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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