Advanced materials with optimized properties are essential in addressing the stringent requirements imposed by future aerospace vehicles. The discovery of carbon nanotubes and their desirable properties, as recognized in diverse scientific disciplines, have therefore identified these materials as expedient candidates for usage in aerospace applications. Given the limited number of overarching review articles encapsulating the usefulness of carbon nanotubes in aerospace sciences, this chapter explores the prospective applications of these materials in aerospace applications with their possible implementation on future aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles and rotorcraft. The prospects of carbon nanotube usage intended for fuselage/satellite weight reduction, aircraft icing mitigation, lightning protection for aircraft, and future space launch are further explored. Conclusively, present challenges associated with successful implementations of these materials and existing obstacles preventing their safe integration in the aerospace industry are revisited, outlined and discussed.
Keywords: Aerospace nanotechnology, Aircraft icing mitigation, Carbon nanotubes, Future aerospace materials, Hydrophobicity, Space elevator.