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CMC Property Variability and Life Prediction Methods for Turbine Engine Component ApplicationThe ever increasing need for lower density and higher temperature-capable materials for aircraft engines has led to the development of Ceramic Matrix Composites (CMCs). Today's aircraft engines operate with >3000"F gas temperatures at the entrance to the turbine section, but unless heavily cooled, metallic components cannot operate above approx.2000 F. CMCs attempt to push component capability to nearly 2700 F with much less cooling, which can help improve engine efficiency and performance in terms of better fuel efficiency, higher thrust, and reduced emissions. The NASA Glenn Research Center has been researching the benefits of the SiC/SiC CMC for engine applications. A CMC is made up of a matrix material, fibers, and an interphase, which is a protective coating over the fibers. There are several methods or architectures in which the orientation of the fibers can be manipulated to achieve a particular material property objective as well as a particular component geometric shape and size. The required shape manipulation can be a limiting factor in the design and performance of the component if there is a lack of bending capability of the fiber as making the fiber more flexible typically sacrifices strength and other fiber properties. Various analysis codes are available (pcGINA, CEMCAN) that can predict the effective Young's Moduli, thermal conductivities, coefficients of thermal expansion (CTE), and various other properties of a CMC. There are also various analysis codes (NASAlife) that can be used to predict the life of CMCs under expected engine service conditions. The objective of this summer study is to utilize and optimize these codes for examining the tradeoffs between CMC properties and the complex fiber architectures that will be needed for several different component designs. For example, for the pcGINA code, there are six variations of architecture available. Depending on which architecture is analyzed, the user is able to specify the fiber tow size, tow spacing, weave parameter, and angle of orientation of fibers. By holding the volume fraction of the fibers constant, variations in tow spacing can be explored for different architectures. The CMC material properties are usually calculated assuming the component is manufactured perfectly. However, this is typically not the case so that a quantification of the material property variability is needed to account for processing and/or manufacturing imperfections. The overall inputs and outputs are presented using a regression software to rapidly investigate the tradeoffs associated with fiber architecture, material properties, and ultimately cost. This information is then propagated through lifing models and Larson-Miller data to assess timehemperature-dependent CMC strength. In addition, a first order cost estimation will be quantified from a current qualitative perspective. This cost estimation includes the manufacturing challenges, such as tooling, as well as the component cost for a particular application. Ultimately, a cost to performance ratio should be established that compares the effectiveness of CMCs to their current rival, nickel superalloys.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Cheplak, Matthew L. (Georgia Inst. of Tech. GA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 23, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2004
Publication Information
Publication: Research Symposium II
Subject Category
Composite Materials
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle20050186580Analytic PrimaryResearch Symposium II