Introduction to types of composites: metal matrix, ceramic matrix, polymer matrix and carbon-carbon composites; Characteristics of polymer matrices, Method of preparation of fibres (glass and carbon), characteristics of different types of fibers; Processing of fibre reinforced polymer matrix composites. Micromechanics and prediction of elastic constants of continuous and short fiber composites; Strength of composites; Constitutive relations, failure modes and failure theories for an orthotropic lamina; Behavior of laminated composites, classical laminate theory (CLT); Analysis of Laminates for first ply failure, progressive failure and for hygro-thermal loads using CLT. Interlaminar stresses and their significance, Test methods for characterization of composite elastic constants and strength; Strength of notched laminates.

Lecture wise Breakup

I. Introduction (1 Lecture):

  • Need for composites, Types of composites, Metal matrix, Ceramic matrix and Carbon-Carbon composites; Polymer matrix composites

II. Constituent materials and fabrication methods (6 Lectures):

  • Characteristics of thermosetting and thermoplastic resins, 

  • Characteristics of Glass, Carbon and Kevlar Fibers, method of making and properties, types of fiber mats.

  • Manufacturing of fiber composites: Hand layup, Pressure bag, Vacuum Bag and Autoclave processes, Pultrusion, Filament Winding, Bulk and Sheet molding compounds, Prepregs etc, including a video demonstration of a hand layup process. 

III. Micromechanics of continuous unidirectional fiber composites (8 Lectures):

  • Prediction of elastic properties using strength of materials approach

  • Introduction to elasticity based approach for prediction of elastic constants (concentric cylinder model)

  • Empirical relations (Halpin-Tsai) for elastic property prediction

  • Comparison of different approaches with examples, 

  • Prediction of strength and discussion on failure modes

  • Prediction of thermal and diffusion properties

IV. Short fiber composites (3 Lectures):

  • Load transfer length, Prediction of elastic properties

  • Elastic property calculation for random fiber composites

V. Analysis of orthotropic lamina (8 Lectures):

  • Generalized Hooke’s law, Material symmetry

  • Orthotropic materials and transversely isotropic materials

  • Transformation of stress and strain, 

  • Stress-strain relations for transversely isotropic lamina under plane stress in material axis and off-axis

  • Failure theories (Maximum stress, strain, Tsai-Hill and Tsai-Wu)

VI. Analysis of laminated composites (12 Lectures):

  • Description of laminate sequence and type of laminates (UD, Symmetric and Asymmetric, Balanced, Quasi-Isotropic) etc.

  • Classical laminate theory (CLT)

  • Failure analysis of laminates using CLT: First ply failure, progressive failure analysis

  • Hygro-thermal stresses in laminates

  • Discussion on interlaminar stresses

VII. Additional topics (4 Lectures):

  • Characterization methods- Test methods for determining elastic constants and strength

  • Fracture oriented failure- Strength of notched composite laminates


  1. Analysis and performance of fiber composites, B. D. agarwal, L. J. Broutman & K. Chandrashekhara

  2. Engineering Mechanics of Composite Materials, I. M. Daniel & O. Ishai

  3. Mechanics of Composite Materials, Autar K. Kaw