Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science in Manufacturing Systems Engineering (MSMSE)

Document Type





Manufacturing Systems Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Rodney J. Andrews

Second Advisor

Dr. Ibrahim S. Jawahir


Carbon nanotubes have been studied for nearly two decades and their amazing properties continue to spur intense investigation in the area of polymer composites. In terms of potential commercialization, mutiwall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) are currently the most prevalent and economically viable form of nanotubes. Uncovering innovative means to take full advantage of their properties remains a fundamental issue. In this thesis, viability of their use to reinforce polymeric systems is reported. Acrylonitrilebutadiene- styrene (ABS) was used as the host matrix. MWCNTs were introduced to the ABS matrix via melt compounding. The resulting composite was thoroughly rheologically, thermally, and mechanically characterized. Several applications were also experimentally studied. The composites fatigue performance is measured and compared to a typical micron sized carbon fiber. These results indicate that both the nano and micron scale carbon fibers reduce the resistance to fatigue failure. The mechanism of failure in both cases appears to be different and is discussed. The use of microwave energy is investigated for the use of heating purposes. Results show a distinct advantage over conventional heating methods. Microwaves allow for volumetric, fast, selective, and controllable heating of the ABS system.

Included in

Manufacturing Commons