Development of a Progressive Failure Model for Notched Woven Composite Laminates
Munden, Daniel Christopher
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As part of the Composite Technology for Exploration (CTE) project at NASA, woven fabric composites are being investigated for their use in Space Launch System (SLS) hardware. Composites are more difficult to analyze than isotropic materials and require more complex methods for predicting failure. NASA is seeking a method for predicting the damage initiation and propagation of woven fabric composites in order to utilize these materials effectively in SLS hardware. This work focuses on notched woven fabric composites under tensile loading. An analytical model consisting of a macro-level failure criterion and damage propagation was developed and implemented in explicit finite element analysis to simulate woven composite materials. Several failure criteria and propagation models were investigated and compared. A response surface was used to better understand the effects of damage parameters on the failure load of a specimen. The model chosen to have best represented the physical specimen used the Tsai-Wu failure criterion. Additional physical tests are needed to further validate the model.
General Audience Abstract
A composite material consists of two or more different materials that are joined together to form a new material with improved properties. Woven fabric composites weave strips of fibers and a bonding material into a pattern to increase the material’s ability to withstand loads in various directions. NASA is seeking a method to predict the conditions under which woven fabric composites will break. A greater understanding of the capabilities of woven fabric composites will help NASA improve the structures involved in space exploration. This work attempts to build an analytical model that can predict the loads under which a woven fabric composite will break in tension. Several different analytical theories were used to model a woven fabric composite and the results were compared with lab tests. One of the theories, the Tsai-Wu failure criterion, was selected as the best representation of the physical specimen. Further additional physical tests are necessary to further validate the analytical model.
- Masters Theses