Carbon fiber composites have received growing attention because of their high performance. One economic method to manufacturing the composite parts is the sequence of forming followed by the compression molding process. In this sequence, the preforming procedure forms the prepreg, which is the composite with the uncured resin, to the product geometry while the molding process cures the resin. Slip between different prepreg layers is observed in the preforming step and this paper reports a method to characterize the properties of the interaction between different prepreg layers, which is critical to predictive modeling and design optimization. An experimental setup was established to evaluate the interactions at various industrial production conditions. The experimental results were analyzed for an in-depth understanding about how the temperature, the relative sliding speed, and the fiber orientation affect the tangential interaction between two prepreg layers. The interaction factors measured from these experiments will be implemented in the computational preforming program.

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