Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Committee Director

Oleksandr Kravchenko

Committee Member

Mileta M.Tomovic

Committee Member

Tian-Bing Xu


Prepreg-based Platelet Molded Compounds (PPMCs) are quickly becoming a widely used method for creating structural components in the aerospace and automotive industries. The discontinuous nature of the platelets used allow good formability of both complex and basic structural components; from seats on commercial airplanes to outer panels of vehicles.

This thesis will look at an important research question of these composites: how PPMCs behave under dynamic loading, e.g. impact and post-impact behavior. Impact is analyzed using recorded force and velocity data to find the absorbed energy. Digital image correlation is used with compression after impact testing to study the propagation of damage in the material with the initial damage present due to impact loading. Residual strengths from compression after impact tests yield a way to evaluate the associated strength knockdown due to the extent of damage within a material. The role of the platelet geometry, by varying platelet length, was evaluated. This work provides a greater insight into the behavior of the prepreg platelet molding compound under impact and post-impact behavior, which is important for understanding structure-property relationships in these composites when subjected to various loading conditions.


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