Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Aeronautics and Astronautics


Aeronautics and Astronautics

Committee Chair

R. Byron Pipes

Committee Member 1

Weinong Chen

Committee Member 2

Tyler Tallman


The extrusion deposition additive manufacturing process produces a short fiber composite material wherein the details of its microstructure directly depend on the manufacturing process parameters. Performance characterization of these materials may become an expensive and laborious proposition if many processing changes are made. The framework for virtually characterizing the mechanical behavior of additively manufactured short fiber composites has been created based on the homogenization methods utilized in multiscale analyses. Experimental quantification of the microstructure of a printed carbon fiber reinforced polycarbonate with 20% fiber weight fraction was performed. The statistical data obtained from the microstructure were used as input parameters for a 3-dimensional representative volume element. The RVE has been described using matrix, fiber and interfacial material models. Multiple stochastically generated RVEs were imported into a finite element solver and progressive failure analysis was used to study the mechanical response. The homogenized mechanical response was in reasonable agreement with experimental results. The variability in mechanical response resulted from micro-morphology differences amongst the stochastically generated RVEs and resemble the variability observed with experimental results.