Shielding Effectiveness and Sheet Conductance of Nonwoven Carbon-Fiber Sheets

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Nonwoven carbon-fiber sheets are often used to form a conductive layer in composite materials for electromagnetic shielding and other purposes. While a large amount of research has considered the properties of similar idealized materials near the percolation threshold, little has been done to provide validated analytic models suitable for materials of practical use for electromagnetic shielding. Since numerical models consume considerable computer resource and do not provide the insight which enables improved material design, an analytic model is of great utility for materials development. This paper introduces a new theoretical model for the sheet conductance of nonwoven carbon-fiber sheets built on the theory of percolation for 2-D conducting stick networks. The model accounts for the effects of sample thickness, fiber angle distribution, and contact conductance on the sheet conductance. The theory shows good agreement with Monte Carlo simulations and measurements of real materials in the supercritical percolation regime where the dimensionless areal concentration of fibers exceeds about 50. The theoretical model allows the rapid prediction of material shielding performance from a limited number of manufacturing parameters.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7565608
Pages (from-to)84-92
Number of pages9
JournalIEEE Transactions on Electromagnetic Compatibility
Issue number1
Early online date13 Sept 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2017

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  • Carbon-fiber composite
  • electromagnetic shielding effectiveness
  • nonwoven fabric
  • percolation theory
  • sheet conductance

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