Biomorphic SiC composites were fabricated by infiltration of liquid Si into a preform fabricated from medium-density fiberboard (MDF). The phase compositions, microstructures, oxidation behaviors, and ablation properties of the composites were investigated. The composites were oxidized at elevated temperatures (up to 1450 degrees C) in air to study their oxidation behavior. Pores and cracks initially formed from the oxidation of residual carbon, followed by melting of residual Si. The ablation resistance of a composite was gauged using an oxy-acetylene torch. The formation of a SiO2 layer by the oxy-acetylene flame improved the ablation resistance because molten SiO2 spread over the ablated surface and partially sealed the pores, thus acting as an effective barrier against the inward diffusion of oxygen. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd and Techna Group S.r.l. All rights reserved.