Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Rogelio Benitez

Second Advisor

Dr. Karen Lozano

Third Advisor

Dr. Mataz Alcoutlabi


This research focuses on developing polymer-derived ceramic fibers. The spun micro/nanofibers were sintered into silicon carbide/silicon nitride and tungsten carbide respectively. The relationship between processing, fiber microstructure, morphology, and purity is investigated by scanning electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, and thermogravimetric analysis. Dynamic Mechanical Analysis was used to test the reinforcement capabilities of tungsten carbide fibers. EDS identified a near-perfect 1:1 Si-C ratio in silicon carbide fibers sintered between 1200 °C -1400 °C, Silicon carbide was confirmed by FTIR between 1000 °C – 1400 °C. Silicon Nitride peaks were noted in FTIR between 1200 °C – 1400 °C. Tungsten carbide nanofibers were confirmed by SEM, EDS, and FTIR for sintering temperatures 800 °C – 1000 °C. DMA results show an increase in mechanical properties as fiber wt % increases in the polymer-ceramic composites made.


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