The researchers also tested composites made with different amounts of nanoparticles for the ability to dissipate energy—as measured by vibration-damping behavior—a capability that would benefit structural materials subjected to impacts, shakes, and other sources of stress and strain. At every concentration, the nanoparticles enhanced energy dissipation (by 65 to 257 percent).

Bowland and Naskar have applied for a patent for the process to make self-sensing carbon fiber composites.

“Dip coating offers a new route to utilize novel nanomaterials under development,” Bowland said.

ORNL’s Laboratory Directed Research and Development Program supported the research, which is published in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, a journal of the American Chemical Society.

The title of the paper is “Roll-to-Roll Processing of Silicon Carbide Nanoparticle-Deposited Carbon Fiber for Multifunctional Composites.”