Imperial College London


Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Aeronautics

Professor in the Mechanics of Composites



+44 (0)20 7594 5076silvestre.pinho Website




314City and Guilds BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Funding bodies include Research Councils and Industry (EPSRC, FCT, MoD, Airbus, Renault F1 team, Rolls-Royce, BAe systems).

Silvestre's main research focus is on experimental, analytical and numerical aspects of failure in fibre-reinforced composites. More recent interests include recycling and reusing composites for a sustainable future.

Silvestre's main scientific achievements include analytical and numerical models for failure prediction and simulation, as well as experimental characterisation techniques. Early progress achieved in the description of failure resulted in a substantial impact, which led to his appointment as a Lecturer at Imperial College (while still a PhD student). In collaboration with the University of Porto and wit NASA, Silvestre's models for fibre kinking were developed further, and a model for matrix tensile failure considering the role of shear nonlinearity on the in-situ strength was developed.

For a more physically accurate prediction of damage propagation, Silvestre developed smeared crack algorithms which take into account the fracture toughness for each failure mode. Models in whose development Silvestre participated are currently being used in leading commercial software (Abaqus, Laminate Tools, Hypersizer, ESAComp) and by researchers at several institutions (General Electrics, NASA, TNO, U Bristol and Daimler).




Dr Lorenzo Iannucci, Imperial College London, Composites

Dr Paul Robinson, Imperial College London, Composites

Prof António Torres Marques, University of Porto, Faculty of Engineering, Composites

Dr Pedro Camanho, University of Porto, Faculty of Engineering, Composites

Prof Paulo tavares de Castro, University of Porto, Faculty of Engineering, Fracture

Josep Costa, University of Girona

Norbert Blanco, University of Girona

Dr Carlos G Dávila, NASA Langley Research Center, Composites

Guest Lectures

Recycled CFRP: From research to structural applications, Carbon Fibre Recycling and Reuse Conference. 3-4 November 2009, Hamburg, Germany, 2009

Stochastic material property modelling, Rolls-Royce, Derby, UK, 2009

Virtual models for design of composite structures, 15th International Conference on Composite Structures. 15-17 June 2009, Porto, Portugal, 2009

Constitutive models for FRP, TU Berlin, Berlin, Germany, 2009

Current models for failure of laminates composites, . First International Conference on Mathematics and Continuum Mechanics, February 19-22 2008, Porto, Portugal, 2008

Material and structural response of polymer-matrix fibre-reinforced composites, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal, 2007

Current predictive capabilities for damage and failure in composites, ITESM, Mexico, 2007

En route to understand, characterise and model failure of laminated composites, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK, 2007

Predicting failure for laminated composites: Understanding, characterising and modelling, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK, 2007

Characterising and modelling damage evolution in laminated composites, University of Girona, Girona, Spain, 2006

Damage evolution in laminated composites, DLR, Stuttgart, Germany, 2006

Measuring the intralaminar fracture toughness for different failure modes in laminated composites, NASA Langley Research Center, Langley, Virginia, USA, 2006

Experimental aspects in the measurement of the fracture toughness in laminated composites, Rolls-Royce, Derby, UK, 2006

Research Student Supervision

CARVALHO,NVD, Failure models for woven composites

DOGRA,J, Experimental determination of the longitudinal strength of thick composites

Done,R, Multiscale analysis of composite structures

GUTKIN,R, Development of Failure Models and Criteria for Laminated Composites

Gispert,C, Delamination and ply jumping in laminated composites

Kiefer,K, Fatigue modelling of delamination in composites

LAFFAN,M, Experimental measurement of the inplane fracture toughness of laminated composites

MCCARROLL,C, Dynamic inplane fracture toughness of laminated composites

Maragos,N, Cost and Quality Optimization of Thermoplastics Fibre Placement Processing

Melro,AN, Experimental, Analytical and numerical modelling of damage and fracture of advanced composites

POTTER,E, Unit cell modelling of 3D woven composites

PSARRAS,S, Failure of composite structures with geometrical discontinuities

Pimenta,S, Structural response of recycled composites

Stocchi,C, Load Transfer Optimisation

Suarez,J, Multiscale analysis of very flexible composite aircraft

Teixeira,R, Fracture toughness models for CFRP

Vyas,G, Constitutive modelling of polymer-matrix fibre-reinforced composites

Whiteside,M, Stochastic Modelling of failrue in composites