Numerical Estimates of the Compressive Strength of Impact-damaged Sandwich Composites
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Improved numerical models have been developed for predicting the compressive strength of impact-damaged sandwich composites comprised of woven-fabric graphite-epoxy facesheets and Nomex honeycomb cores. The proposed methodology contains three key elements: (1) the use of nondestructive inspection estimates of damage, (2) the incorporation of nonlinear through-the-thickness core-crush constitutive response to account for core failure, and importantly (3) the simulation of progressive loss of facesheet structural integrity based upon userspecified ply failure criteria. The finite element predictions of residual strength for panels impacted with relatively blunt objects correlate well with the experimental observations; this is in contrast to a number of estimates from literature that tend to overestimate the strength. The proposed approach may potentially facilitate sandwich design by providing insight into the relationships between material configuration and damage that lead to improved damage tolerance characteristics. © 2007 SAGE Publications.
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