High Velocity Impact on Composite Structures

Professor Hyonny Kim

Advanced composite materials such as graphite/epoxy laminates are especially vulnerable to transverse impacts which can result in damage that is difficult to detect. Damage that is barely visible, or not visible (e.g., delaminations, debonding in joints) can significantly reduce a structure’s performance. High velocity impact tests onto composite structures are conducted to investigate the damage produced by projectiles such as hail ice, birds, or other foreign objects that pose a threat to aircraft structures. In addition to experimental investigations, numerical simulations and projectile material models are conducted to better understand the impact event and to provide predictive capabilities.

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