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This project investigated a proof of concept design involving a rotor fabricated from aluminum with replaceable friction surfaces with greater or equal performance characteristics in order to reduce cost and maintenance. The replaceable friction surfaces provide a means to mitigate cost to the end user. The structure is constrained by the dimensions, 11.75” diameter and 1.25” width and serves as a direct replacement rotor for a circle track racecar. Analyses provide a direct comparison in static mass, moments of inertia, and forced convection thermal calculations in order to determine if the concept was viable. Requirements for a successful design were a 22% reduction in total rotating mass, resist a linear deceleration rate of 8 meters per second, and the centripetal forces of an angular velocity of 315 radians per second. Off-car testing revealed a 4 pound reduction in static rotor mass and achieved a 34% reduction in the moment of inertia. On-vehicle testing involved data logging multiple laps at a local racetrack. The concept rotor assembly displayed a higher theoretical peak than the conventional design. In the composite structure the heat was rejected earlier in the cool down phase of the lap resulting in higher steady state of absorption/radiation characteristics. Means of monitoring the performance are by way of a GPS accelerometer and remote mounted infrared sensors mounted to each hub. This design offers the all the function of a conventional rotor with a 42% reduction in replacement cost and 18% reduction in replacement time.

Publication Date

Spring 5-27-2015


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Central Washington University


Ellensburg, Washington


Heat transfer, Temperature Replaceable Braking


Mechanical Engineering





Composite Brake Rotor Assembly by Utilizing Replaceable Friction Surfaces