The effect of CNT-reinforced polyurethane foam cores to flexural properties of sandwich composites

Cigdem Caglayan, Idris Gurkan, Sila Gungor, Hulya Cebeci*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)


In foam cored sandwich composites, it is crucial to understand micromechanical characteristics of foam in relation with its properties to understand synergetic effects of adding nanomaterials such as CNTs. In this study, effects of CNT dispersion and distribution on cell morphology and foamability of rigid polyurethane (PU), which is directly related to microstructure and mechanical performance of overall structures were investigated. Raw and functional CNTs were added to rigid polyurethane foams up to 0.2 wt.% and their compressive strength is evaluated. The results showed that dispersion media such as PMDI with low viscosity revealed a better CNT dispersion and resulted with an enhancement of 13% in compressive strength compared to neat PU foams. This enhancement in foam core properties reflected in sandwich composites with an enhancement approximately 30% in both core shear and face ultimate strength. Hence, core shear found to be the common failure mechanism for all sandwich composites.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-195
Number of pages9
JournalComposites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Ltd


The authors thank to Roketsan Missiles Inc. and ITU BAP (Project No: MYL-2017-40704) for supporting this work financially. The authors also would like to thank to M.Sc. student Beyza Bozali for performing the mechanical tests and Hasan Kaşıkçı for the support received from Likrom Inc. during the rheological tests. Also special thanks to Didem Ovalı and Deniz Köken for TGA analyses.

FundersFunder number
Likrom Inc.
Missiles Inc. and ITU BAPMYL-2017-40704
Roketsan Missiles Inc.


    • Carbon nanotubes
    • Failure modes
    • Heterogeneous nucleation
    • Polyurethane
    • Rheology
    • Sandwich composites
    • Three-point bending


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