The University of Sheffield
Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Emeritus Professor Frank R Jones

Prof F R Jones

Emeritus Professor of Polymers and Composites

Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Sir Robert Hadfield Building
Mappin Street, Sheffield, S1 3JD

Fax: +44 (0) 114 222 5943


Frank Jones joined the Department from the University of Surrey in 1985 where he had been a lecturer since 1975, and quickly established a composites research laboratory and surface analysis laboratory. In 2005, he received the Plueddemann Award for excellence in research into Interfaces in Composite Materials and the Holliday Prize of Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOMMM). In 2007, he was elected by the International Committee on Composite Materials (ICCM) as Scala Award winner and World Fellow of ICCM. He is a Freeman of the Company of Cutlers. He authored the encyclopaedic text: Handbook of Polymer-fibre composites (Longman 1994).

Research interests

His research interests have centred around correlations between molecular aspects and macroproperties of polymer matrix composites. Thus, micromechanical techniques have been developed and employed to provide the link between resin and interface chemistry and global properties. This work was initiated through extensive research programmes in environmental stress corrosion cracking of glass fibre composites and has been used to study mechanisms of moisture absorption and thermal and hygrothermal degradation of advanced high temperature matrix systems.

Within the field of Interfacial Response in Composite Materials, correlations between the chemistry at fibre-matrix interfaces and the micromechanics of failure in composites and laminates have been achieved by coupling finite element (FE) modelling and the surface chemistry of the interactions from X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS). Thus, surface treatment of a reinforcing fibre can modify the elasto-plastic properties of the matrix or interphase as well the adhesion. Fibre surfaces are being molecularly engineered using plasma polymerisation to optimize interphase/interface micromechanics. This has been extended to provide damping to structures. Most recently phase stepping photoelasticity has been developed for a study of interface micromechanics.

Group Interaction Modelling has been applied to the prediction of thermomechanical properties of thermosetting resins, especially epoxies used as matrices for composites. Thus the stress strain curve can be calculated from the chemical structure of the network and introduced into a statistical model for composite strength.

Key projects

Professional activities and recognition

Key publications

Research group

Dr S A Hayes

Research Associates:
Dr Joel Foreman (
Dr Zheng Liu

Research Students:
Tim Swait
Yifan Chen
Jack Howarth
Penshom Photjanataree
Mohd Suzeren Md Jamil
Wenting Zhang
Binil Paul
Craig Hayes
Sakina Hashim

Research themes/centres

Polymers and Composites Research

Ceramics and Composites Laboratory

Sheffield Polymer Centre

The IRC in Polymers


National Composites Network

CSIC Composite Systems Innovation Centre

IIMM Conference in 2010, Sheffield

DFC11/SI5 Joint Conference in Cambridge 2011