C-CAT was founded in 1988 by Francis Schwind. Mr. Schwind was the manufacturing engineer for the Carbon-Carbon Wing Leading Edge and Nose Cap for the Space Shuttle Orbiter. As the Space Shuttle program began to wind down, Mr. Schwind sought the opportunity to take his knowledge of the Carbon-Carbon manufacturing process to industry. Over the last 25 years, C-CAT has significantly advanced the state of the art for the manufacture of Carbon-Carbon.
Carbon-carbon or C/C is a composite material comprised of carbon fiber reinforcement in a matrix of graphite. C/C has gained a space-worthy reputation due to its high temperature resistance withstanding temperatures from 3,200 to 4,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1760 – 2204°C). The material becomes stronger as it gets hotter. Components constructed from C/C will hold their shape and remain sound under serious duress.