Composite heat exchangers can provide significant reduction in the weight of a compact heat exchanger in comparison to metal heat transfer units. A Carbon-Carbon (C-C) composite heat exchanger core has been fabricated to study the heat transfer and friction characteristics of single layer plate-fin geometry. The plate and fins are both C-C composites, in which the carbon matrix is reinforced by high conductivity graphitic carbon fibers to improve the fin effectiveness of the heat exchanger. A heat flux is applied to the top and bottom of the heat exchanger core to heat an air stream passing through the channels. The heat transfer coefficient and the friction coefficient are determined and the experimental results are compared with data for a standard plate fin heat exchanger of similar geometry. It was determined that the C-C heat exchanger had lower Colburn heat transfer factor than a similar metal plate-fin heat exchanger; but had high surface temperature effectiveness. The friction factor of the C-C heat exchanger was slightly lower than the metal plate-fin heat exchanger.

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