Materials Science and Engineering Seminar Series

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  • Date/Time:
    • Monday April 6, 2020 - Tuesday April 7, 2020
      3:00 pm - 3:59 pm
  • Location: Atlanta, GA
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Summary Sentence: Join Materials Science and Engineering as they present their Materials Science and Engineering Seminars Series featuring Satish Kumar.

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  • Satish Kumar Satish Kumar

After sixty years, what is next for carbon fiber development?


Satish Kumar, Professor

School of Materials Science and Engineering

Georgia Institute of Technolgy 



Carbon fiber research began ~1958. Initial carbon fibers were made from cellulosic fibers such as rayon. Subsequently carbon fibers have been made from petroleum pitch and polyacrylonitrile. Continuous carbon fibers from meso phase pitch with higher that 90% of the theoretical modulus and with high electrical (~ 10S/m) and thermal (~1000 W/m/K) conductivity can be made. However these fibers have relatively low tensile (less than 3 GPa) and low axial compressive (below 500 MPa) strength. Early PAN based carbon fibers (during 1960s) also had relatively low tensile properties (strength below 1 GPa and modulus below 100 GPa). However, PAN based carbon fibers are the strongest structural materials available today with strength in the range of 5 to 7 GPa and modulus in the range 275 to 350 GPa. PAN based carbon fibers are also available with modulus values as high as 500 GPa (or higher) with a tensile strength below 4 GPa. Yet, the strength and modulus values of PAN based carbon fibers are only about 5% and 30 to 50% of the theoretical values. PAN based carbon fibers also have relatively low electrical and thermal conductivities. Cost, world-wide manufacturing capacity, and the composites manufacturing speed are the barriers for wide spread use of carbon fibers, for example for automobiles. After tracing the development of carbon fibers over the last sixty years, the current trends in carbon fiber research will be discussed.   The current trend includes the development of the following: (i) low cost carbon fiber, (ii) high strength and high modulus carbon fiber, (iii) Low density carbon fiber, and (iv) multi-functional carbon fibers. 

 Ref:  Huibin Chang, Jeffrey Luo, Prabhakar V. Gulgunje, and Satish Kumar. “Structural and Functional Fibers”, Annual Review of Materials Research, (2017). 47: 331-359.



Satish Kumar received his M.Sc. degree in Physics from University of Roorkee, India (now Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee) in 1975 and Ph.D. degree in the area of Polymer/Fiber Science from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, India in 1979. He obtained post-doctoral training under the tutelage of Professor R. S. Stein (NAE, NAS) at University of Massachusetts, Amherst MA, during 1979-82. He further conducted research on structure-property relationships in polymers at C.E.N.G. Grenoble – a laboratory of the atomic energy commission of France (1982-83) and at the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright Patterson Air Force Base OH (1984-89). He joined the faculty of the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1989 and is currently serving as Professor of Materials Science and Engineering. Professor Kumar has established a well-recognized research program in the field of structure, processing, and properties of polymers, nano composites, carbon fibers, and multifunctional fibers. He has also established world-class carbon fiber manufacturing laboratory at Georgia Tech. He has published over 230 papers, and is the co-inventor of 20 granted or pending patents. He received the Georgia Tech Research Corporation award for creating the Next Innovation and Impact in Materials Research in 2017.  He is a fellow of the Polymer Chemistry Division of the American Chemical Society, and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).


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In Campus Calendar

Georgia Tech Materials Institute

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Faculty/Staff, Public, Undergraduate students
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  • Created By: Farlenthia Walker
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  • Created On: Apr 3, 2020 - 3:02pm
  • Last Updated: Apr 3, 2020 - 3:02pm