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An Efficient Reduced Order Modeling Method for Analyzing Composite Beams Under Aeroelastic Loading
Names, Benjamin Joseph
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Composite materials hold numerous advantages over conventional aircraft grade metals. These include high stiffness/strength-to-weight ratios and beneficial stiffness coupling typically used for aeroelastic tailoring. Due to the complexity of modeling composites, designers often select safe, simple geometry and layup schedules for their wing/blade cross-sections. An example of this might be a box-beam made up of 4 laminates, all of which are quasi-isotropic. This results in neglecting more complex designs that might yield a more effective solution, but require a greater analysis effort. The present work aims to show that the incorporation of complex cross-sections are feasible in the early design process through the use of cross-sectional analysis in conjunction with Timoshenko beam theory. It is important to note that in general, these cross-sections can be inhomogeneous: made up of any number of various materials systems. In addition, these materials could all be anisotropic in nature. The geometry of the cross-sections can take on any shape. Through this reduced order modeling scheme, complex structures can be reduced to 1 dimensional beams. With this approach, the elastic behavior of the structure can be captured, while also allowing for accurate 3D stress and strain recovery. This efficient structural modeling would be ideal in the preliminary design optimization of a wing structure. Furthermore, in conjunction with an efficient unsteady aerodynamic model such as the doublet lattice method, the dynamic aeroelastic stability can also be efficiently captured. This work introduces a comprehensively verified, open source python API called AeroComBAT (Aeroelastic Composite Beam Analysis Tool). By leveraging cross-sectional analysis, Timoshenko beam theory, and unsteady doublet-lattice method, this package is capable of efficiently conducting linear static structural analysis, normal mode analysis, and dynamic aeroelastic analysis. AeroComBAT can have a significant impact on the design process of a composite structure, and would be ideally implemented as part of a design optimization.
- Masters Theses