Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Engineering Science

First Advisor

Don, Jarlen


Carbon-carbon composite brakes are one third the weight of typical steel brakes, and they attain strength and frictional properties at temperatures up to 1600°C. C/C composite brakes can endure high temperatures, but in the presence of oxygen they will begin to oxidize at 400°C. Anti-oxidant systems must be applied to the non-rubbing surfaces of the C/C composite stators and rotors to prevent oxidation. Currently, commercial phosphorus based coating materials are made of crystalline metal phosphates that are derived from heat treated phosphoric acid-based liquid precursors painted on the non-rubbing surface of C/C composites. These crystalline metal phosphate coatings are very porous and tend to move to the friction surface when exposed to increased levels of relative humidity. This anti-oxidant migration towards the rubbing surface causes a drop in frictional properties. Migration reduction and oxidation inhibition was improved upon with advanced anti-oxidant systems. The advanced antioxidants analyzed protected the C/C composite from thermal and catalytic oxidation six to ten times better at 650°C than commercial materials. At 871°C, the antioxidants protected the C/C composite from thermal oxidation ten times better than commercial materials. Migration of the antioxidant to the rubbing surfaces was eliminated through the use of advanced antioxidant compositions. The predicted life of the antioxidants was modeled using Avrami's equation. Characterization of the antioxidants was further analyzed through the use of SEM, EDS, and XRD systems.




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