Composite laminate design, not complicated with the right tools

The use of lightweight components stands or falls by the choice of materials. The product value, product costs, production costs, development costs and risks are, however, difficult to estimate when talking about less well-known materials such as composites. Our fifth white paper shows how a lay-up of fibre reinforced layers can be defined from given load cases by calculating stiffness matrices.

Through a series of white papers the SLC-Lab and the department dealing with sustainability at Sirris, as well as their partners in the CompositeBoost project, want to pass on the essential tools and methodologies to help designers and OEMs make the right choices in materials.

In the white paper ‘Do Composites and their anisotropic behaviour only lead to advantages?’, we have shown the importance of the stacking sequence of several fibre reinforced layers, not only in terms of stiffness, but also in terms of unexpected behaviour. For example, an unexpected out-of-plane bending deformation was demonstrated even though an in-plane loading scenario was used. In view of the importance of the lay-up sequence, this fifth white paper shows how a lay-up can be defined from given load cases by calculating stiffness matrices. The classical laminate theory is a fast and easy method to be used for relatively simple geometries, avoiding complex finite element simulations. Different commercial and free tools are described and illustrated by a case study.  

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