Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science

First Advisor

Maciej Kumosa, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Davor Balzar, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Yun Bo Yi

Fourth Advisor

Peter Laz

Fifth Advisor

Iwona Jasiuk


Aging, Composites, Mechanical testing, Ozone, Polymers, Thermal analysis


The next generation High Temperature Low Sag Polymer Core Composite Conductors (HTLS PCCC) can experience harsh in-service environments including high temperature and highly concentrated ozone. In some extreme cases, it is possible that the conductors will experience temperatures of up to 180°C and ozone concentrations as high as 1% (10,000 ppm). Therefore, the primary goal of this research was to determine the most damaging aging conditions which could negatively affect the in-service life of the conductors. This included characterizing the aging in ozone and at high temperature of the HTLS PCCC hybrid composite rods and neat resin. It was found that exposure to 1% ozone for up to three months at room temperature did not negatively affect the flexural performance of either the neat resin epoxy, or the hybrid composite rods. When aged up to a year at 140°C no detrimental effect on flexural performance of the composite was observed, as opposed to aging at 180°C, which had a very negative effect on the properties. The aging of the epoxy at 140°C was driven almost entirely by temperature and the effect of 1% ozone, even at that temperature, was insignificant for aging times up to ninety days. A finite element model was developed and showed the residual stresses developed after aging at 140°C for a year were minimal, but for temperatures higher than 160°C were substantial. From this it was determined that the aging was thermally driven, and atmospheric high temperatures were the most damaging conditions for the PCCC conductors.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

James M. Middleton


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

202 p.


Materials Science