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International Heat Transfer Conference 12

ISSN: 2377-424X (online)
ISSN: 2377-4371 (flashdrive)

Effective conductivity of longitudinally-aligned composites with cylindrically orthotropic short fibers

Carlos Frederico Matt
Department of Mechanical Engineering - EE/COPPE Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) CP 68503, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 21945-970, Brazil

Manuel Ernani C. Cruz
Department of Mechanical Engineering, POLI/COPPE, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Cid. Universitária, Cx. Postal 68503, Rio de Janeiro, 21941-972 Brazil

DOI: 10.1615/IHTC12.770
6 pages


New composite materials are being continually developed for various industrial applications. In particular, a commonly manufactured type of composite consists of short fibers dispersed in a solid matrix. Most of the works in the literature treat the short fibers as isotropic ellipsoids of revolution. However, experimental evidences confirm that the short fibers approach the circular cylindrical shape, and often display a cylindrically orthotropic behavior. Few numerical studies have focused on global behavior of such short-fiber composites. In this paper we use an approach based on variational calculus, homogenization theory and the finite element method to calculate new, benchmark results for the components of the effective thermal conductivity tensor of longitudinally-aligned short-fiber composites with cylindrically orthotropic fibers. The three-dimensional periodic cell microstructrure consists of a circular cylindrical fiber placed at the center of a cube and along one of its horizontal axes. We generate tetrahedral finite-element meshes in the cell, and employ isoparametric quadratic discretization and conjugate gradient iteration to solve the cell problem and to obtain the numerical results for the effective conductivities of interest. These results are analysed and compared to previously reported results.

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