How thin are carbon fibers?

Contact us to get in touch!

Fill out the form and we will return to you asap. Thanks!

OUR GENERAL CONTACT:

info@managingcomposites.com
(+34) 919 54 55 60

JOB APPLICANTIONS:

whereismyhelmet
@managingcomposites.com

The answer is simple, carbon fibers have a diameter between 5 and 10 micrometers. But that is kind of hard to visualize, right? So, let’s compare them to something all humans have (some more than others), hair! 
 
Luckily, we have a very nice picture that makes it very easy to draw a comparison. Crazy to realize how carbon fibers are thin, right? In case you are wondering, a human hair is about 40-120 microns in diameter.  
 
But if you think that human hair is a very weak material, you are wrong! It consists almost entirely of a protein called Keratin which has about half of the ultimate tensile strength of steel (200 MPa). If you are tensile testing a single strand, you will only measure about 100 grams of force.  
 
Going back to carbon fibers, it is crucial for them to have small diameters, because it allows greater graphite content. This way, the probability of having a concentration of defects in the 3D structure is considerably reduced. The mechanical properties of these fibers are inversely proportional to their filament diameter.  

Carbon Fiber vs Human Hair