High Thermal Conductivity for Carbon/carbon Composites for Space Radiators

Period of Performance: 08/24/1993 - 11/25/1995


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Applied Sciences, Inc.
141 W. Xenia Ave. Array
Cedarville, OH 45314
Principal Investigator

Research Topics


High performance space vehicles have created a demand for materials which have combined requirements for severe mechanical stress, thermal stress, and high thermal conductivity. The material for these applications is a carbon/carbon composite reinforced with vapor grown carbon fiber (VGCF). In a Phase I SBIR program, VGCF-reinforced carbon/carbon composites have been fabricated which easily establish new records for high mass-specific thermal conductivity. Based on these results, ultimate thermal conductivity in excess of 1000 W/m-K are anticipated when carbon/carbon processing for VGCF is fully developed. The Phase II technical objectives are to complete the composite optimization studies on VGCF carbon/carbon composites initiated in Phase I, and to translate this technology into the world's highest performance radiator through a design and prototype fabrication task. Preform fabrication will emphasize high fiber volumes with minimal fiber damage. both liquid infiltration and chemical vapor infiltration methods for composite densification will be investigated to determine optimum matrix properties. Following optimization of composite processing, a radiator will be designed and fabricated as a deliverable. The accomplishment of these tasks will serve to qualify VGCF carbon/carbon composites for radiators used in numberous space and terrestrial applications.