Manufacturing Driven Design

SC03: Manufacturing Driven Design Allowables and Failure Mechanisms, Queens University, Belfast

Fibre-Reinforced Plastics (FRPs) have been utilised in civil aerospace vehicles for decades. The continual increase in FRP materials over metallic alloys is attributable to the material potential for improved static strength and durability. However, the full potential of these materials has yet to be exploited as analysis methods to predict key physical failure modes with accuracy and robustness are not yet available. For example a key limiting factor on high-strain and buckling/post-buckling composite designs is that today’s standard analysis tools are not capable of accurately and robustly representing the damage mechanisms which ultimate lead to structural collapse. Moreover, the manufacturing process linked with configuration design also influences both the allowable stresses and the mode of failure. Thus current designs are constrained from exploiting the full potential of available materials.

This study aims to develop a new understanding of how varying impacts in service relate to design damage allowables in advanced structural composites to bridge the knowledge gap between design standards and real airframe structure and has the following objectives:

  1. Review, benchmark and validate the most promising damage initiation and propagation models for industrial application.
  2. Review, benchmark and validate the sources and consequences of in service impacts and damage, and component variability, on strength, life and cost.
  3. Use the selected models to explore the potential design space of high-strain and buckling/post-buckling designs, assessing potential weight and/or manufacturing cost savings.
  4. Develop initial sizing tools again using the selected models, paying particular reference to defect detectable thresholds as potential design variables.
  5. Develop a virtual test system to allow rapid assessment of competing processes.

Awarded to: Mark Price