Prof. Wesley Cantwell

Prof. Wesley Cantwell

Director, Aerospace Research and Innovation Center (ARIC); Associate Dean for Research; Department of Aerospace Engineering

Address: P.O.Box: 127788, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Telephone: +971 (0)2 401 8181
Fax: +971 (02) 447 2442
Email: wesley.cantwell@ku.ac.ae

Professor Wesley Cantwell is the Director of the Aerospace Research and Innovation Center (ARIC) and a Professor of Aerospace Engineering at Khalifa University. He is also the Associate Dean for Research in the College of Engineering at Khalifa University. Prior to joining Khalifa, he was a Professor in the School of Engineering at the University of Liverpool (1994 – 2012) and a Research Scientist in the Department of Materials at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (1985-1994) in Switzerland. He has also been a visiting scientist at Virginia Tech and the University of Kyushu, Japan. He received his MSc and PhD degrees in Aeronautical Engineering from Imperial College, London and his BSc in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering from the University of Southampton.

Professor Wesley Cantwell’s research interests focus on the manufacture and testing of high-performance composite materials. He has worked extensively on the impact response of composites and sandwich structures as well as on characterizing the blast response of lightweight structures. He has also worked on developing hybrid materials, such as thermoplastic fiber metal laminates, based on combinations of metal alloys and fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composites. Other areas of research include smart materials, where fiber Bragg grating and plastic optical fibers have been embedded in composites and FMLs, and 3D metal printing, where complex lattice structures have been manufactured and tested under extreme conditions.

Wesley Cantwell has published over 220 journal articles and currently serves on the Editorial Board of a number of international journals, including Composites Science and Technology and the International Journal of Impact Engineering. He has also given keynote addresses at many international conferences, including the European Conference on Composite Materials and the International Conference on Composite Science and Technology.

Wesley Cantwell is the Director of the Aerospace Research and Innovation Center (ARIC), a research initiative that is funded by Mubadala and Khalifa University. Research in the Center focuses on manufacturing strategies for producing high quality composite structures and also the automated assembly of composite parts. The Center is unique within the region, hosting a range of manufacturing, non-destructive testing and robotic equipment. The Center supports the manufacturing initiatives at Strata in Al Ain and works closely with leading aerospace OEMs.

  • Ph.D., Aeronautical Engineering, Imperial College (UK), 1985
  • M.Sc., Aeronautical Engineering, Imperial College (UK), 1982
  • B.Sc., Aeronautical Engineering, University of Southampton (UK), 1981
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Composite Materials
  • Impact and blast response of composite materials
  • Smart materials and structures
  • Advanced manufacturing techniques for composite materials
  • Additive manufacturing technologies




  • Sitnikova, E., Guan, Z.W., Cantwell, W.J., “The analysis of the ultimate blast failure modes in fibre metal laminates,” Composites Science and Technology, Vo. 27, pp. 1-12, 2016.
  • Zhou, J., Guan, Z.W., Cantwell, W.J., “Scaling effects in the mechanical response of sandwich structures based on corrugated cores,” Composites Part B – Engineering, Vol. 93, pp. 88-96, 2016.
  • Al Antali, A., Umer, R., Zhou, J., Cantwell, W.J., “The Energy-absorbing Properties of Composite Tube-Reinforced Aluminum Honeycomb,” Composite Structures, Vo. 176, pp. 630-639, 2017.
  • Ali, M., Umer, R., Khan, K.A., Samad, Y.A., Kiao, K., Cantwell, W.J., “Graphene Coated Piezo-resistive Fabrics for Liquid Composite Molding Process Monitoring,” Composites Science and Technology, Vol. 148, pp. 106-114, 2017.
  • Aziz, A.R., Umer, R., Zeng, X., Ali, M.A, Schubel, P., Cantwell W.J. “Transverse permeability of dry fiber preforms manufactured by automated fiber placement,” Composites Science and Technology, Vol. 152, pp. 57-67, 2017.

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