Composite Materials for Aerospace

Course length:

3 Days



Course dates

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This three-day course is designed for mechanical or materials engineers and managers that are going to use composite materials, i.e., graphite/epoxy, etc., in aerospace and military applications. This will allow mechanical and materials engineers to use simplified “design” equations needed to estimate the type of laminate for their design. The course also offers engineering managers the opportunity to see the complexity involved in composite design. Each topic will include worked numerical examples. Specific applications from SPFIE, MSX, NEAR, and other programs will be presented.

What You Will Learn:

  • What are the constituents of a composite, the analysis, tooling and fabrication processes used to consolidate a composite component?
  • Understand the effects of fabrication variables on the properties of the composite material.
  • What are generic mechanical and physical properties of composites versus traditional engineering materials?
  • What are the limits of composites?
  • What is a lamina, a laminate and how does the stiffness of each lamina contribute to the overall stiffness of the composite?
  • How are stiffness and rigidity used to form two sets of equations that link the in-plane forces and moments?
  • How to calculate initial estimates of stresses within a lamina.
  • What are various strength criteria, including the Tsai-Wu failure envelope?

Course Outline:

  1. Introduction to Composites
  2. Mechanics of Composite Materials
  3. Laminate Analysis
  4. Processing of Composites
  5. Fabrication of Composites
  6. Aerospace and Spacecraft Applications
  7. Design Case Studies


Dr. Jack C. Roberts ASME Fellow, specializes in structural analysis & design, composite materials, biomedical & biomechanics and proposal writing. Dr Roberts is a previous member of the Principal Professional Staff at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, where he has performed hand structural analysis and finite element modeling on composite structures for Aerospace, Naval, Space and biomedical applications. Dr. Roberts has a Ph.D. in mechanical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic institute and has his own consulting business, Dr. Roberts has over 115 publications, presentations and proceedings, 16 patents, 3 book chapters and numerous awards from industry and universities.


Paul J. Biermann is a materials and process engineer and a member of the Principal Professional Staff at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, with over 36 years experience in design, manufacturing, and characterization of composite materials and engineering polymers. He has worked on composite components for spacecraft, biomedical applications and for undersea deployment. He has an extensive background in composite cure and assembly techniques, polymer molding and casting, tooling and mold fabrication, adhesive bonding, and test equipment and methods. He holds the degree of BS in Materials Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Mr. Biermann has 37 published papers and two book chapters. He also holds 17 US patents.


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SCHEDULING: If this course is not on the current schedule of open enrollment courses and you are interested in attending this or another course as an open enrollment, please contact us at (410)956-8805 or Please indicate the course name, number of students who wish to participate. and a preferred time frame. ATI typically schedules open enrollment courses with a 3-5 month lead-time. To express your interest in an open enrollment course not on our current schedule, please email us at

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