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RESEARCH PAPERS

Design of Sandwich Panels With Prismatic Cores

[+] Author and Article Information
Z. Wei, A. G. Evans

Materials Department, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106

F. W. Zok

Materials Department, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106zok@engineering.ucsb.edu

J. Eng. Mater. Technol 128(2), 186-192 (Nov 02, 2005) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2172279 History: Received May 12, 2005; Revised November 02, 2005

The paper focuses on optimization of lightweight sandwich panels with prismatic cores subject to bending loads in the two principal in-plane directions. Comparisons are made with optimal designs of panels with corrugated cores: a limiting case. When optimized for loading transverse to the prism axis, prismatic panels outperform those with corrugated cores, especially at lower loads. In contrast, when optimized for longitudinal loading, the corrugated core panel is always superior. Both panels exhibit significant anisotropy: a deficiency mediated by optimizing jointly for both orientations. The designs emerging from joint optimizations have only slightly lower load capacity than those optimized singly, but with the benefit of equal strengths in the two principal directions. Moreover, jointly optimized corrugated and prismatic panels perform equally well. Both are competitive with honeycomb core panels, especially at high load capacities. With the additional potential for multifunctionality (notably active cooling), the corrugated panels appear to be particularly promising thermostructural elements.

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Copyright © 2006 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Schematic of a prismatic core panel and its unit cell (n=4)

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Figure 2

Optimal designs for transverse loading. Solid lines are for prismatic cores and dashed lines for corrugated cores (n=1). Active failure modes for the prismatic cores are indicated on (a).

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Figure 3

Optimal designs for longitudinal loading (solid lines). Also shown are the optimization results assuming that core failure is shear dominated (dashed lines). The load capacity of the latter designs, predicted by the full model (accounting for both shear and moment), are plotted as dotted lines in (a). Active failure modes for the prismatic cores are indicated on (a).

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Figure 4

(a) Longitudinal and transverse load capacities of panels optimized for loading in each of the two principal directions, for εy=0.001. (b) Variation in anisotropy of singly optimized panels with weight, for both εy=0.001 and 0.007.

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Figure 5

Designs of panels optimized jointly for loading in both principal directions (solid lines). Also shown in (a) are the weights of the singly optimized designs. Superscripts on failure modes: T=transverse; L=longitudinal. The geometric parameters for both prismatic and corrugated cores are presented in (b)–(e). (Weights of the corrugated cores are shown in Fig. 6.)

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Figure 6

Weight comparisons of fully optimized panels with prismatic, corrugated, and square honeycomb cores. (The first two were jointly optimized to give the same load capacities in the two principal directions.)

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