Date of Award

12-2015

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering

Department

Graduate Studies

Committee Chair

Dr. Sathya Gangadharan

First Committee Member

Dr. Habib Eslami

Second Committee Member

Dr. Sirish Namilae

Abstract

The area under crack for various structures can be effectively repaired by the use of composite materials. Low velocity impact can cause barely visible damage to the interior structure of laminated composite. These impacts can cause delamination in composite materials. In this study, a Finite Element Analysis was conducted using Abaqus/Explicit and the results of the analysis were compared to the experimental data from literature. E-glass/epoxy composite laminate was subjected to a low velocity impact test. To study the effect of patch repair, a composite patch was applied on a cracked laminate and a low velocity impact was then conducted on this model. The FEA results were validated with the experimental data and an approach to model an ideal composite patch shape was conducted. Different patch shapes like square, rectangle, circle and ellipse were designed and analyzed on the crack by keeping the surface area of the patch common. All these patches were compared and an ideal patch shape was found for the model on the basis of stress concentration on the patch. Finally a parametric study was performed considering the change in impactor speed and impactor material on the impact damage. Thus, this research work readily demonstrates the effectiveness of finite element analysis of low velocity impact.

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