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Investigation of constraint effects on flaw growth in composite laminates

An investigation was conducted to study the constraint effects on flaw growth in composite laminates. Results were presented for the case of a transverse flaw in an interior ply perpendicular to the loading axis. Two orientations of the flawed ply were examined (0 and 90 degrees), and two distinctly different constraint situations were studied (cross-ply constraint and biaxial constraint).

Throughout the study, various nondestructive testing methods were employed to evaluate the material response and to determine the damage and damage growth in the specimens. These techniques include replication, ultrasonic c-scan, ultrasonic attenuation, acoustic emission, x-radiography, thermography and stiffness measurement.

The effects of constraint on the response of composite materials can be classified in two categories: (a) in-plane effects and (b) through-the-thickness effects. In-plane constraint is the principal contributor to notched strength and changes in notched strength under quasi-static loading. Through-the-thickness constraint controls the pattern and spacing of transverse cracks in the off-axis plies to form a characteristic damage state in the laminates. Out-of-plane stresses produced by constraints are influential on the growth of damage along ply interfaces, especially during cyclic loading.

The mode of damage and the extent of damage in constrained notched plies are governed by the stress state in those plies, as determined by the constraining plies, and the relationship of the stress state to the strength state. Maximum constraint on the flawed ply does not produce minimum damage in the laminate; and the lesser degree of damage (in terms of axial splitting and delamination) does not necessarily result in a higher laminate strength or long fatigue lives. In the design of composite structures, a compromise has to be reached with regard to optimizing material parameters such as strength, stiffness, fatigue life, and residual strength. In maximizing one parameter, one might have to sacrifice other requirements on the other material properties in the design. / Ph. D.
Date January 1979
CreatorsYeung, Peter Chun-Ngok
ContributorsMaterials Engineering Science
PublisherVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Source SetsVirginia Tech Theses and Dissertation
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeDissertation, Text
Formatx, 95 leaves, application/pdf, application/pdf
RightsIn Copyright,
RelationOCLC# 6027416

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