Ablation behaviour of carbon fibre ultra-high temperature composites at oblique angles of attack

B. Baker*, V. Venkatachalam, L. Zoli, A. Vinci, S. Failla, D. Sciti, J. Binner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Oxyacetylene torch testing was performed at a range of angles of attack on Cf/ZrB2-SiC-Y2O3 composites, from 10° to 90°. The ablation behaviour was studied in-situ with thermography, and the post-ablation morphologies investigated optically and with elemental analysis. Significantly lower surface temperatures were observed at oblique angles of attack leading to less damage in terms of both oxidation extent and material removal. Rudimentary modelling of a gas stream impinging on a perfect surface showed that the angular variation also led to a significant drop in pressure at more oblique angles of attack, with a commensurate increase in shear stress. The surface oxide formed during testing seemed mainly to correspond to the temperature distribution and was apparently more susceptible to damage from higher impinging pressure than shear stress. This study elucidated some interesting aspects of a modified ablation test and showed some new parameter ranges which may be useful in targeted material screening.

Original languageEnglish
Article number110199
Number of pages12
JournalMaterials and Design
Early online date27 Oct 2021
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 “Research and innovation programme” under grant agreement No. 685594 (C3HARME). The raw and processed data required to reproduce these findings are available to download from DOI: 10.17632/9ch7z4kt9j.1.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors


  • Ablation analysis
  • Ceramic matrix composites
  • Oxidation test methods
  • Oxyacetylene torch testing
  • Ultra-high temperature ceramics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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