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The Effect of Carbon Fibre Body Panels on Aircraft RCS

A simple case study at 50MHz to demonstrate the effect on aircraft RCS of using carbon fibre body panels, rather than metallic body panels.


Problem Specification:

  • Compute the monostatic RCS of an F5 fighter aircraft.
  • Demonstrate the differences in RCS between a fully metallic airframe and an airframe where the majority of body panels are made from carbon fibre.
  • Single layer of carbon fibre and used in construction (few metallic parts remain), with fibre alignment direction and metallic areas as indicated here.
  • Carbon fibres are bonded with epoxy, resulting in layers with the following electromagnetic properties.

Conductivity (S/m)
Relative permittivity
Carbon fibre
Epoxy 5e1 3.4

Azimuth Scanned RCS


Elevation Scanned RCS