# Composite Laminate Modeling

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1 omposite Laminate Modeling White Paper for Femap and NX Nastran Users Venkata Bheemreddy, Ph.D., Senior Staff Mechanical Engineer Adrian Jensen, PE, Senior Staff Mechanical Engineer

2 WHAT THIS WHITE PAPER OVERS This note is intended for new engineers interested in modeling composites and experienced engineers who would like to get acquainted with the Femap interface. This note is intended to accompany a technical seminar and will provide you a starting background on composites. The following topics are covered: o A little background on the mechanics of composites and how micromechanics can be leveraged to obtain composite material properties o 2D composite laminate modeling Defining a material model, layup, property card and material angles Symmetric vs. unsymmetric laminate and why this is important Results post processing o 3D composite laminate modeling Defining a material model, layup, property card and ply/stack orientation When is a 3D model preferred over a 2D model o Modeling a sandwich composite Methods of modeling a sandwich composite 3D vs. 2D sandwich composite models and their pros and cons o Failure modeling of a 2D composite laminate Defining a laminate failure model Post processing laminate and lamina failure indices Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 2 of 66

3 TABLE OF ONTENTS 1. INTRODUTION TERMINOLOGY TYPES OF MATERIALS Anisotropic Material Orthotropic Material Isotropic Material OMPOSITE MIROMEHANIS RULE OF MIXTURES Application Example LAMINATE MODELING IN FEMAP IMPORTANT ENTITIES DEFINING AN ORTHOTROPI MATERIAL UNDERSTANDING THE LAYUP EDITOR PROPERTY ARD: 2D LAMINATE MODELING ASSIGNING MATERIAL ANGLES Defining a Material Angle on the Element Defining a Material Angle in the Property ard Advanced Application Example of Assigning Material Angle to a omplex Geometry PROPERTY ARD: 3D LAMINATE MODELING MULTI-MATERIAL ANGLE EXAMPLE OF A 3D OMPOSITE MODEL EXAMPLE 1: REATING A 2D LAMINATE MODEL IN FEMAP INTRODUTION...28 Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 3 of 66

4 4.2 REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY DEFINING THE LAYUP DEFINING THE LAMINATE PROPERTY (POMP) SPEIFYING MATERIAL ANGLES ANALYSIS SETUP AND POST PROESSING Analysis Set Manager Setup for omposites Post Processing the Results EXAMPLE 2: REATING A 3D LAMINATE MODEL IN FEMAP INTRODUTION REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY DEFINING THE LAYUP DEFINING THE LAMINATE PROPERTY (POMPS) SPEIFYING MATERIAL ANGLES POST PROESSING THE RESULTS EXAMPLE 3: MODELING A SANDWIH OMPOSITE INTRODUTION REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY DEFINING THE LAYUP DEFINING THE PROPERTY ARDS POST PROESSING THE RESULTS OTHER METHODS FOR SANDWIH OMPOSITE MODELING LAMINATE FAILURE THEORIES IN FEMAP INTRODUTION HILL S THEORY...47 Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 4 of 66

5 7.3 HOFFMAN S THEORY TSAI-WU THEORY MAXIMUM STRAIN THEORY ONSET FAILURE THEORY EXAMPLE 4: MODELING THE FAILURE BEHAVIOR OF OMPOSITE LAMINATES REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY DEFINING THE LAMINATE PROPERTY RESULTS ADDITIONAL READING MATERIAL DATABASE APPENDIX LASSIAL LAMINATION THEORY Kinematic Equations onstitutive Equations Resultants Equilibrium Equations Stiffness Matrices A, B, and D UNSYMMETRI LAYUP HAMIS MODEL ONSET FAILURE THEORY...64 Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 5 of 66

6 1. INTRODUTION omposite Laminate Modeling Using Femap 1.1 TERMINOLOGY omposite material: A combination of two or more materials to form a new material system with enhanced material properties. Examples of reinforcements are glass fibers, carbon fibers, silicon carbide fibers etc. Examples of matrix materials are epoxy, polyurethane, silicon carbide etc. Lamina: A lamina is a thin layer of composite material. The thickness of the lamina is usually.1 to 1 mm. It is also referred to as a ply. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 6 of 66

7 Laminate: A laminate is constructed by stacking a number of laminae. The building block for a laminate is lamina. 1.2 TYPES OF MATERIALS In engineering applications, materials can be broadly classified as anisotropic, orthotropic, and isotropic. An anisotropic material has the generalized formulation, while other two are derived by some simplifications ANISOTROPI MATERIAL An anisotropic material has no planes of material symmetry. Examples of anisotropic materials are femur, short-fiber composites etc. The number of constants required to describe anisotropic materials is 21. The stiffness matrix shown below is symmetric about the diagonal terms. Accordingly, all the diagonal terms and the terms above/below the diagonal terms have to be defined in the material model. σ σ σ τ τ τ ε ε ε γ γ γ Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 7 of 66

8 Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 8 of 66 ORTHOTROPI MATERIAL An orthotropic material has three planes of material symmetry. Examples of orthotropic materials are wood, unidirectional lamina etc. The number of constants required to describe orthotropic materials is 9. The stiffness matrix is symmetric and all the diagonal terms and terms above/below the diagonal terms have to be defined. However, commercial finite element software allow defining the elastic moduli (E 1, E 2, E 3 ), shear moduli (G 12, G 13, G 23 ), and Poisson s ratio (ν 12, ν 13, ν 23 ) instead of calculating each of the stiffness terms. The finite element software can internally evaluate these stiffness terms. ISOTROPI MATERIAL All planes are planes of symmetry. Examples of isotropic materials are metals like steel, aluminum etc. There are only 2 independent constants ( 11 and 12 ) for an isotropic material. Similar to the orthotropic material model, one can define E and ν instead of calculating the stiffness terms. γ γ γ ε ε ε τ τ τ σ σ σ γ γ γ ε ε ε τ τ τ σ σ σ

9 2. OMPOSITE MIROMEHANIS Study of composite material behavior wherein the interaction of constituent materials are examined on a microscopic scale to determine their effect on the properties of the composite material. Predict the properties of composite, given the component properties and their geometric arrangement. The mechanical properties of the composite depend on the percentages of fibers and matrix. 2.1 RULE OF MIXTURES If the fiber and matrix properties are available, a reasonable estimation of the lamina properties can be obtained using the rule of mixtures (strength of materials approach). Here, E L and E T correspond to longitudinal and transverse moduli of the composite lamina, G LT and ν LT correspond to inplane shear modulus and Poisson s ratio, respectively. Suffix f corresponds to fiber property and m corresponds to matrix property. In the above equations, V corresponds to volume fraction APPLIATION EXAMPLE E L 1 E ν T 1 G E V E V LT LT f Vf E We will consider the mechanical properties of a carbon fiber and an epoxy resin to apply the rule of mixtures and estimate the lamina mechanical properties. For this example, we will consider a fiber volume fraction of 56%. For most structural applications, a fiber volume fraction greater than 55% is typically used. Increasing the fiber volume fraction can favor in terms of the load carrying capacity as fibers take majority of the load. However, fiber volume fraction cannot be increased beyond a certain limit (typically around 65%). Just as a note, the theoretical maximum volume fraction for a fiber (cylinder) is 78% for square packing. As the resin content is reduced, fibers are not f f f f Vf G V E f m m m V G m m m m ν V ν V m Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 9 of 66

10 completely wet during the manufacturing process and can result in increased dry spots (part quality is reduced). This will result in reduced load transfer between the fibers. onstituent E L (GPa) E T (GPa) ν G (GPa) V f (%) arbon fiber Epoxy resin The carbon/epoxy lamina properties are calculated using the rule of mixtures as shown below. E L = 22* *.44 = 125 GPa 1/ E T = (.56/22) + (.44/3.3) =.14 GPa -> E T = 7.4 GPa 1/ G LT = (.56/25) + (.44/1.2) =.39 GPa -> G LT = 2.6 GPa ν LT =.56* *.37 =.25 The mechanical properties (2D orthotropic) obtained using the rule of mixtures for a carbon/epoxy lamina are shown below. arbon/epoxy lamina E L (GPa) E T (GPa) G LT (GPa) ν LT Rule of mixtures hamis model Experimental [1] Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 1 of 66

11 3. LAMINATE MODELING IN FEMAP In this section, we provide details on modeling composite laminates in Femap. There are four important entities in which modeling laminates differs from conventional metallic components. omposite laminate modeling deals with the following modifications: an orthotropic/anisotropic (typically) material configuration laminates have a layered configuration, so a layup configuration has to be specified with the thickness of each layer and their orientation angles w.r.t a reference axis an element/property type that accounts for the layered configuration has to be used reference axis (material angle) specification Each of the above entities and their definition in Femap is summarized in the following sub-sections. There are two work flows that can be followed to model a laminate in Femap depending on whether the laminate model is a 2D or 3D. Defining the material cards, layup, and property cards is common between 2D and 3D models; however, material angles can be specified using two approaches in a 2D model while only one approach is used for a 3D model. In 2D models material angles can be specified at element level or directly in the property cards. Specifying material angles on elements is a convenient approach especially for complex geometries; we can select a set of elements and apply the material angle instead of assigning a specific material angle to all elements in a property card. For 3D models, we have to define material angles in the property card and so we need to create multiple property cards for complex geometries. In the following sub-sections, an overview of Femap interface for laminate modeling is provided accompanied by worked examples. Work flow 1 Work flow 2 laminate (2D) material model layup property card define material angle on element laminate (2D) and solid laminate (3D) material model layup property card with material angle Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 11 of 66

12 3.1 IMPORTANT ENTITIES Modeling composites can be easier if the following entities are carefully assigned. It is important to select/create a coordinate system that is appropriate for your composite laminate. In most cases, the basic rectangular coordinate system will work. However, one needs to be careful while dealing with curved laminates. Individual ply orientations assigned in layup editor will be referenced/relative to coordinate system assigned in this step. A material type for the composite laminate should be assigned. Typically used material types are 2D/3D orthotropic materials for continuous fiber-reinforced composite laminates. A property card corresponding to a composite laminate has to be specified. For 2D modeling, the element/property type can be a laminate type. Similarly, for 3D modeling, the element/property type can be a solid laminate type. A suitable failure criterion can also be specified using the property card. The composite laminate layup configuration is provided using the layup editor. Using the layup editor, ply stacking (number and direction), ply material, individual ply orientations and ply thicknesses are provided. *Always check your units Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 12 of 66

13 3.2 DEFINING AN ORTHOTROPI MATERIAL Notice that we have different properties in longitudinal (E 1 ) and transverse (E 2 ) directions, where E 1 is aligned to the angle specified within the layup. Depending on the type of analysis, various material properties are required. Select an appropriate material type (eg., orthotropic 2D) Required if Tsai-Wu failure criterion is used. This value is to be experimentally determined. *Always check your units If you have fiber and matrix properties, you can still estimate the composite properties using rule of mixtures or other methods. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 13 of 66

14 3.3 UNDERSTANDING THE LAYUP EDITOR Thickness of individual ply Notice the layup direction (numbering): bottom layer to top layer omputes laminate equivalent properties (inplane properties, bending properties, ABD matrices) Material assigned for each ply in the laminate. Multiple materials can also be assigned (eg., honeycomb core). These angles/orientations are relative to the material angle (reference axis) specified for the element. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 14 of 66

15 Layup viewer is a useful tool to visualize the layup that has been created. It is important to notice that these angles/orientations are relative to the material angle (specified in the property card or on the elements). To avoid confusion, one can draw the orientations along with the assigned material angle and verify if the angles match the actual orientations in your layup. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 15 of 66

16 3.4 PROPERTY ARD: 2D LAMINATE MODELING Default is -.5*total thickness Select the layup created 2D laminate modeling Required if a failure criterion is selected. This allowable stress corresponds to interlaminar shear stress. Use a specific failure theory, if you want to compute failure indices of individual plies Explore these options. If all the plies in the laminate are specified in the layup, you can leave it to default. If only half the plies are specified, you can use symmetric option to create a symmetric laminate. Assign an appropriate material angle. Layup angles will be oriented relative to this material angle. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 16 of 66

17 Orientation angles specified in the layup editor Predictive Engineering Femap White Paper 3.5 ASSIGNING MATERIAL ANGLES Although, orientation angles are specified for each lamina individually in the layup editor, Femap will not understand as to which reference direction these orientations (angles) correspond. So, we need to specify a material angle such that all orientations (specified in layup) take this vector as the reference. For example, if the material angle is defined in the global x-direction then all the orientations will use global x-direction as the reference. One should not be confused with the terminologies material angle and orientation angle in the layup editor. Material angle is a reference axis that we assign to the element and is independent of the shape of the element. Orientation angle is the orientation of the lamina (fiber direction). By default, Femap assigns no material angle. Use any of the following methods to specify the material angle. Image source: Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 17 of 66

18 3.5.1 DEFINING A MATERIAL ANGLE ON THE ELEMENT One can define/update the material angles using toolbar Modify -> Update Elements - > Material Orientation. This method allows one to define a material angle to a selected set of elements or all the elements at a time. It is important to note that the material angle is independent of the element coordinate system and the element shape. For example, the image below shows elements that are distorted. However, the material angles are all aligned to the global-x direction. If a material angle is not defined, Femap will show an error message. If you miss defining a material angle for a few elements in the model, it can be quite difficult to trace the elements with missing definitions. We have developed an API to filter these elements with missing elements and group them. By accessing this newly created group, one can assign/update the material angles to these elements only. The API is called omposites Material Angle hecker, and can be downloaded from our website at One can verify the material angles in the laminate elements by selecting the following options under F6 or View Options. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 18 of 66

19 3.5.2 DEFINING A MATERIAL ANGLE IN THE PROPERTY ARD In this approach, we can define a material angle directly in the property card. However, this will assign the material angle to all the elements that the property id is associated with. One can also check the assigned material angles and update them (in case of any incorrect material angles) accordingly using the procedure in approach 1. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 19 of 66

20 1 Any of these methods can be used 2 In case of a complex geometry with curved surfaces, material angles can be effectively defined using the cylindrical coordinate system by using the tangent direction if the vector has to follow a curved surface. Always remember to verify your material angles! ADVANED APPLIATION EXAMPLE OF ASSIGNING MATERIAL ANGLE TO A OMPLEX GEOMETRY The example below shows a composite wing leading edge. The material angle needs to follow the curvature of the leading edge. However, we can see from the picture that the vectors (representative of the material angles) do not follow the curvature. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 2 of 66

21 Vectors do not follow the curvature of the leading edge In order to assign the material angle accurately, we can use the cylindrical coordinate system (R, T, Z) instead of a rectangular coordinate system (X, Y, Z). We want to create a new cylindrical coordinate system (instead of an existing cylindrical coordinate system) that will do a better job in accurately assigning the material angles. Follow the steps below to create a new cylindrical coordinate system. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 21 of 66

22 The new coordinate system is shown below. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 22 of 66

23 We will use the procedure detailed in section (Defining a material angle on the element) to update the material angle. Go to toolbar Modify -> Update Elements - > Material Orientation. This will prompt you to select the elements for which the material angle has to defined/updated. For this example, we will select all the laminate plate elements. Next, you will be prompted to select the material orientation direction (shown below). The above procedure will orient the all the material angles along the curvature of the leading edge. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 23 of 66

24 3.6 PROPERTY ARD: 3D LAMINATE MODELING For 3D laminate modeling, one can specify both shear stress allowable and normal stress allowable for the bond. 3D laminate modeling Notice that, failure theories are not available in the property card. In solid laminates, failure criterion is specified using the materials card. In 3D laminate modeling, we define a ply/stack direction instead of a material angle. For example, if the material angle is in global-x and the layup stacking in global-z, then we specify the ply/stack direction as XZ (13). Unlike 2D, we cannot use approach 1 (Modify -> Update Elements - > Material Orientation) for 3D solid laminate elements. We can create multiple property cards (if necessary) with different ply/stack directions for sections of your geometry. And try to explore other coordinate systems for specifying the ply/stack direction. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 24 of 66

25 Specify elastic properties in general tab Specify failure criterion in ply/bond failure tab 3.7 MULTI-MATERIAL ANGLE EXAMPLE OF A 3D OMPOSITE MODEL This example shows a composite component with sections oriented in different directions. The component is modeled using laminate solid elements. Here, we cannot use a single ply/stack direction for all the sections of the component. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 25 of 66

26 In this example, we will create three property cards (identified by color as shown above) to define ply/stack direction separately for each of the three sections of the composite component. The following images will show how ply/stack directions have been defined for these sections. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 26 of 66

27 Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 27 of 66

28 4. EXAMPLE 1: REATING A 2D LAMINATE MODEL IN FEMAP 4.1 INTRODUTION In this example, we will analyze a simple composite laminate with a hole subjected to uniaxial tension. omposite laminates are often studied for open-hole tension in the aerospace industry. The material, layup, and the thicknesses used in this example are from a real world composite part. Here, we will study two types of layups with the same number of layers and same orientations but stacked in different ways. We will analyze the differences in the results just by altering the layup stacking order. We will learn this unique behavior of composites by working out this example. With multiple plies in the layup, this is also a good example for post processing. 4.2 REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY The material properties used for the laminate correspond to a unidirectional carbon/epoxy lamina. Accordingly, the material type needs to be 2D Orthotropic for this problem. The material properties are shown in Table 1. Table 1. Mechanical properties of a unidirectional T8S/39-2 lamina Property Unit T8S/39-2 Longitudinal elastic modulus (E 1 ) GPa 147 Transverse elastic moduli (E 2 = E 3 ) GPa 7.58 In-plane shear modulus (G 12 ) = Interlaminar shear modulus (G 13 ) GPa 3.96 Interlaminar shear modulus (G 23 ) GPa 3. In-plane Poisson s ratio (ν 12 ) = Interlaminar Poisson s ratio (ν 13 ).33 Interlaminar Poisson s ratio (v 23 ).38 Longitudinal tensile strength (X t ) = Longitudinal compressive strength (X c ) GPa 2.86 Transverse tensile strength (Y t ) = Transverse compressive strength (Y c ) GPa 1.55 Shear strength (S) GPa.14 Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 28 of 66

29 Since the laminate model is 2D, the direction 3 properties can be ignored for this problem. 4.3 DEFINING THE LAYUP We will analyze two types of layups in this model. The idea is to observe how the layup can affect your analysis even if the laminate effectively has the same number of layers, same orientation angles, but stacked up in a different sequence. Layup 1: [45 /9 /-45 / ] s with each layer at.195 mm thickness. The subscript s in the layup definition shows that it is symmetric laminate. This implies that the layup configuration is [45 /9 /-45 / / /-45 /9 /45 ]. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 29 of 66

30 Layup 2: [45 /9 /-45 / /45 /9 /-45 / ]. Layup 2 has 8 layers as layup 1 except that the layup configuration is no longer symmetric about laminate s mid-plane. The layup editor with Layup 1 defined is shown below. Layup 2 can be defined in a similar manner by changing the orientation angles. 4.4 DEFINING THE LAMINATE PROPERTY (POMP) The Nastran property card for 2D laminates is POMP. Detailed information on the POMP card is available in the Nastran User Guide. The 2D laminate formulation is based on classical lamination theory. Select the Laminate element/property type in the property card. By default, Femap assigns plate element type for 2D models. The layup defined in the previous step can be assigned in the property card. Since we have defined all the 8 layers in the layup, options is left to its default As Specified in the property card. Alternatively, we can define 4 layers only in the layup and use Symmetric option. However, this option has to be used with caution as it cannot be used for unsymmetric Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 3 of 66

31 laminates. Ideally, one can define all the layers in the layup editor unless there are a large number of layers (e.g., thick composite). 4.5 SPEIFYING MATERIAL ANGLES For this problem, we will use global x-direction as our material angle. We can use one of the procedures which were introduced earlier. 4.6 ANALYSIS SETUP AND POST PROESSING For this model, a force of 1 kn is applied on the nodes on one end and fixed constraints are applied on the other end as shown below. To simulate the experimental loading behavior, the 1 kn load is applied on an independent node and this node is rigidly linked to nodes on the right end of the laminate model (shown below). When the load is applied on the independent node, the resulting displacement is translated to the dependent nodes. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 31 of 66

32 The model is ready to be analyzed and is solved for a linear static case. The model is analyzed for the two layups and the deformations observed in both these cases are discussed. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 32 of 66

33 4.6.1 ANALYSIS SET MANAGER SETUP FOR OMPOSITES SROMPS controls the computation and printout of ply strength ratios. When on, ply strength ratios are output for composite elements that have failure indices requested. NOFISR controls the printout of the composite failure indices and strength ratios. When on, the failure indices and strength ratios will not be printed. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 33 of 66

34 4.6.2 POST PROESSING THE RESULTS Initially, the model with the symmetric laminate ([45 /9 /-45 / / /-45 /9 /45 ]) was analyzed. The total translation in this model is shown below. The deformations are symmetric about the x-axis. Under the applied uniaxial tensile load, deformations were inplane as expected. No out-of-plane deformations were observed. Next, the model with unsymmetric laminate ([45 /9 /-45 / /45 /9 /-45 / ]) was analyzed. From the contours (shown below), it can be observed that the deformations were not symmetric about the x-axis. Also, we can now see that the unsymmetric laminate resulted in an out-of-plane deformation although the loading was uniaxial. Symmetric laminate No out-of-plane deformations Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 34 of 66

35 Unsymmetric laminate with out-of-plane deformations This kind of behavior is unique in fiber-reinforced composite laminates and often not explored due to inherent design challenges. An unsymmetric layup can result in warping of the laminate as early as during the manufacturing process when the laminate is cured at high temperatures. Thus, it is quite challenging to design an unsymmetric laminate to suit a specific loading environment. One practical example of an unsymmetric laminate application is in the forward swept composite wings of the X-29 aircraft [2]. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 35 of 66

36 X-29 aircraft Photo courtesy of Structural Mechanics orporation If this subject interests you, please see the Appendix. Next, we proceed to stress distributions in the individual plies. For this discussion, we will use the symmetric laminate results. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 36 of 66

37 The stress contour shown above corresponds to the major principal stress in ply 4 ( layer). Similarly, we can plot stress distribution in other layers. Femap has bunch of output options and sometimes it can be difficult to find the same output vector for another ply. There are some custom tools available in Femap which can be effectively used for laminates. For example, we can use the Laminate Prev Ply tool to plot ply 3 Major Principal Stress (provided we have a plot of ply 4 Major Principal Stress) without putting effort in finding the output vector amongst large set of results. This will be particularly useful if you have a large number of layers in the laminate. Some of the tools which are specific to laminates are shown below. These tools can be accessed from ustom Tools -> PostProcessing. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 37 of 66

38 If you would like to use these API s frequently, we can create a customized toolbar with these commands. It is easier this way to find a command in the toolbar rather than searching for these commands in the ustom Tools. We have created a video on creating a customized toolbar and can be accessed from 5. EXAMPLE 2: REATING A 3D LAMINATE MODEL IN FEMAP 5.1 INTRODUTION In this example, we will develop a 3D laminate model to analyze a simple composite laminate with a hole subjected to uniaxial tension. This is an extension of example 1 to a 3D laminate model. The goal is to understand the applicability of both the models. The material, layup, thicknesses, and the approach used in this example are same as in the example 1. A major difference between the 2D laminate model and the 3D laminate model is that the former will not take out-ofplane stresses in to account while the latter will. The 3D laminate models will be useful if you are modeling a composite structure with free edges like holes where the out-of-plane shear stresses can be important. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 38 of 66

39 5.2 REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY Defining the material properties for a 3D laminate model is similar to the 2D model except that the material type is now 3D orthotropic. Accordingly, direction-3 properties should also be defined. All the required properties are defined in Table DEFINING THE LAYUP Specifying the layup configuration is similar to the 2D case. However, the material property (3D orthotropic) created in the previous step has to be used instead of 2D orthotropic properties as in example DEFINING THE LAMINATE PROPERTY (POMPS) Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 39 of 66

40 The Nastran property card for 3D laminates is POMPS. Detailed information on the POMPS card is available in the Nastran User Guide. Select the Solid Laminate element/property type in the property card. By default, Femap assigns Solid element type for 3D models. The layup defined in the previous step can be assigned in the property card. The interface for the 3D laminate property card is slightly different from the 2D case. Here Ply/Stack Direction has to be assigned. For example, for the 3D laminate model the Ply/Stack Direction is specified as XZ (13). Here, X corresponds to the direction of the material angle (as defined in 2D case) and Z corresponds to the stacking direction. Unlike the 2D laminates, the 3D laminate formulation is not based on classical lamination theory. 5.5 SPEIFYING MATERIAL ANGLES The only difference between specifying material angles for a 2D case and 3D case is that the 3D model requires specifying the Ply/Stack Direction. The overall concept is still the same. 5.6 POST PROESSING THE RESULTS The image below shows the finite element mesh of the 3D laminate model. In this example, only one solid element is defined through the thickness. The thickness of the element corresponds to the total thickness of the laminate 1.56 mm. Top view Front view 1.56 mm Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 4 of 66

41 The 3D laminate model is analyzed with the symmetric layup configuration. The observed displacements and stresses are shown below. The displacement results are quite similar to the 2D case. The major principal stress distribution in ply 4 ( layer) is shown below. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 41 of 66

42 6. EXAMPLE 3: MODELING A SANDWIH OMPOSITE 6.1 INTRODUTION In this example, a 3D sandwich composite model is analyzed for a uniform pressure loading. The sandwich composites have a core (e.g., honeycomb, foam, etc.) sandwiched between two facesheets. Typically, the facesheets carry the majority of the inplane and bending loads while the core takes shear. A sandwich composite can be conveniently modeled using the 2D laminate layup by defining the core as one of the layers in the layup editor (shown at the end of this example). While this procedure is easy, interlaminar shear stresses (around free edges) become important in sandwich composites and 2D laminate models (based on classical lamination theory) do not account for the out-of-plane stresses. 6.2 REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY Two material models, each for the composite facesheet and core are defined. The composite facesheet is modeled as a 3D orthotropic material and the properties are shown in Table 1 (example 1). The core is modeled as an isotropic material with E = 4 GPa and ν =.25 [3]. 6.3 DEFINING THE LAYUP Defining the laminate layup for the facesheets is same as in example 2. However, it should be noted that we have two facesheets and so we have to create two solid laminate property cards, one for the top facesheet and one for the bottom facesheet. If two layups are not created separately for each of the facesheets, we will see output vectors corresponding to 8 plies only in the results set. If two layups are created, then we can see output vectors for 16 plies, 8 for the bottom facesheet and 8 for the top facesheet. 6.4 DEFINING THE PROPERTY ARDS Three property cards have to be created, two of solid laminate type for facesheets and one solid type for the core. Each of the solid laminate property cards have to be assigned to the corresponding facesheets. The material angles specification for the solid laminates is similar to the previous example. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 42 of 66

43 Facesheet ore 6.5 POST PROESSING THE RESULTS lamped boundary conditions have been applied on the sandwich composite edges and a pressure load of 1 MPa is applied on the top surface. Top view Front view Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 43 of 66

44 The deformation plot of the sandwich composite due to the applied pressure load is shown below. The interlaminar shear stress distribution in the core is shown below. One can mask the facesheet elements while plotting the shear stress distribution in the core. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 44 of 66

45 The bond between the core and facesheets is one of the critical regions for delamination in sandwich composites. These interlaminar shear stresses are higher at the free edges and these areas are potential regions for delamination initiation. One can compare the interlaminar shear stresses to the core-to-facesheet bond shear allowable and analyze for any possible delaminations. 6.6 OTHER METHODS FOR SANDWIH OMPOSITE MODELING In this example we have developed a 3D sandwich composite model in which the facesheets and the core are modeled as solids. Other methods by which the above problem can be analyzed are: 1. 2D sandwich composite modeling in which the facesheets and the core are all 2D and can be defined in a single layup definition. This is a convenient approach however, as discussed earlier, the 2D laminate models are based on classical lamination theory and do not account for the out-of-plane stresses. Secondary methods are used to estimate the interlaminar stresses. Top ore Bottom 2. A mix of 2D laminates and 3D core. In this method, the facesheets can be modeled as 2D and the core can be modeled as a solid. One should be careful about defining the laminates for this configuration. Both the facesheets have to be placed at an offset of half the laminate thickness from the solid core. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 45 of 66

46 3. Using the classical plate theory to model sandwich composites. This model requires some hand calculation to be done and is complex as compared to the 2D laminate model. The Nastran property card corresponding to the plate model is the PSHELL card. In the method 1 described above, Nastran converts a POMP property into an equivalent PSHELL. So, both method 1 and method 2 should give similar results if all the properties are accurately defined. To avoid confusion, method 1 is preferred over method 2 as both are the same in terms of how Nastran interprets the property card. Alternatively, Femap has a custom tool to define a sandwich composite using the PSHELL method. One can do hand calculations and compare their values with the Femap calculated value as shown below. This custom tool for sandwich composites can be accessed from ustom tools -> Honeycomb PSHELL -> Honeycomb PSHELL Property. ompare your hand calculations to these Femap calculated values Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 46 of 66

47 7. LAMINATE FAILURE THEORIES IN FEMAP 7.1 INTRODUTION The behavior of composites is complex (as a result of heterogeneous properties) when compared to monolithic materials. Understanding the behavior of composites under extreme conditions of mechanical loading, temperature, and other environmental factors poses a great challenge. The effect of these service conditions on the composite can range from a minor loss of stiffness at micro-level to catastrophic failures at structural level. The microstructure of the composite evolves in multiple ways before evidencing measurable degradation. Typical forms of micromechanical failures include fiber breaking, matrix cracking, fiber/matrix interface debonding etc. Factors such as microcracking (typically in a matrix) are unavoidable and can be inherent in the manufactured composite part. Microcracking can result from processing the composites at high temperatures (cure cycle), due to differences of thermal conductivities/coefficients of thermal expansion between the constituents (fiber, matrix). Other forms of composite material property degradation can result from hygrothermal loading and oxidation. In this section, we will deal with the failure at ply level and not the micromechanical failures. Several failure theories have been developed to study failure envelopes of composite laminates. The failure theories that are available in Femap are discussed below. Some of these models (maximum stress theory, maximum strain theory) are based on pure comparison of observed stresses/strains in the laminate with their respective allowables. Other models such as Hill s theory, Tsai-Wu theory, and Hoffman s theory consider interaction of longitudinal/transverse stresses/strains to predict the failure envelope. Although failure theories can be handy to check the failure indices and decide if failure occurs in the laminate, it is important to understand the stress distribution in the model, interlaminar stresses and their effects on delamination, ABD matrices etc. 7.2 HILL S THEORY Hill s failure theory is applicable for orthotropic materials that have the same strength in tension and compression, i.e., X t = X c and Y t = Y c. Failure Index (FI) is given by: Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 47 of 66

48 X is allowable stress in 1-direction Y is allowable stress in 2-direction S is allowable stress in shear X t = Allowable tensile stress in 1-direction X c = Allowable compressive stress in 1-direction Y t = Allowable tensile stress in 2-direction Y c = Allowable compressive stress in 2-direction X = X t if σ 1 is positive or X = X c if σ 1 is negative and similarly for Y and σ 2. For the interaction term σ 1 σ 2 /X 2, X = X t if σ 1 σ 2 is positive or X = X c if σ 1 σ 2 is negative. Strength Ratio (SR) is given by, 7.3 HOFFMAN S THEORY Hoffman s theory for an orthotropic lamina in a general state of plane stress with unequal tensile and compressive strengths is given by, The failure index is obtained by evaluating the left-hand side of the above equation. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 48 of 66

49 7.4 TSAI-WU THEORY The theory of strength for anisotropic materials proposed by Tsai and Wu specialized to the case of an orthotropic lamina in a general state of plane stress with unequal tensile and compressive strengths is, The failure index is obtained by evaluating the left-hand side of the above equation. F 12 is to be evaluated experimentally. By default, this term is set to zero in Femap (Tsai-Wu interaction term). 7.5 MAXIMUM STRAIN THEORY The maximum strain criterion has no strain interaction terms. The failure index is calculated using, X, Y, and S are allowable strains in longitudinal direction, transverse direction and inplane, respectively. A failure index for maximum stress theory (available for 3D laminate modeling) can be derived similar to maximum strain theory. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 49 of 66

50 7.6 ONSET FAILURE THEORY The Onset failure theory or the Strain Invariant Failure Theory (SIFT) is widely used in the aerospace industry. A brief overview of this failure criterion is provided in the appendix. 8. EXAMPLE 4: MODELING THE FAILURE BEHAVIOR OF OMPOSITE LAMINATES For this example, we will use the 2D laminate model from example 1. All the modeling procedure that we have done for the 2D laminate model will be supplemented by defining failure strengths of the lamina and a failure criterion. The goal is to study the failure in composite laminates and also explore the output vectors that can be handy in visualizing the failure at ply level and laminate level. 8.1 REATING THE MATERIAL PROPERTY Specify Tsai-Wu interaction term if you use Tsai-Wu failure criterion. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 5 of 66

51 8.2 DEFINING THE LAMINATE PROPERTY The laminate layup is the same as in example 1. The laminate property card is also defined in a similar manner. Additionally, we specify a failure criterion to calculate the failure indices at ply level and for the whole laminate. For this example, we will use the Hoffman s failure criterion. The bond shear allowable term is defined to predict interlaminar bond failure. If one is not interested in the interlaminar failure, this term can be left to its default value. The specification of material angles follows the same approach as in example RESULTS In this example, we are mainly interested at looking into the failure indices and evaluate the laminate and individual lamina. A uniaxial tensile load of 5 kn is applied. The contour below shows the laminate failure index and can be accessed from the output vector 66 Laminate Max Failure Index. This output vector shows the overall failure index of the laminate. A contour value (failure index) greater than or equal to 1 implies failure. Based on this information, one can assume that there are one or more layers in which the failure has occurred. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 51 of 66

52 Next, we can check the failure index output vector on a ply-by-ply basis to find out the layers in which the failure has occurred. We can contour the output vector Lam Ply Fib Fail Index for a particular ply and then use the custom tool options Laminate Next Ply or Laminate Prev Ply and check the failure indices. Within ustom Tools -> PostProcessing, Femap has an API for Laminate Envelope Failure Indices. urrently, this API generates the same output vector as 66 Laminate Max Failure Index. However, this API can be custom modified to envelop other output vectors (e.g., bond failure indices). Instead, if you are interested in manually selecting the output vectors and enveloping them to a single output vector, you can use Model -> Output -> Process Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 52 of 66

53 An example of enveloping major principal stresses in all the plies is shown below. This procedure can be followed to envelope any output vector. If the analysis has only one output set, then we can envelope the output vectors from that output set. However, if we have multiple output sets, then we need to select one or more output sets from which we would like to envelope the output vectors. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 53 of 66

54 1 2 Select this option once the other options are defined Use this option instead of manually selecting the output vector for major principal stresses in all the other plies 3 You can verify that the requested output vector is selected in all the plies Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 54 of 66

55 This will create new output vectors as shown below. Major Principal Stress output vector enveloped over all the plies Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 55 of 66

56 Other output vectors are also created which allow finding the location info (ply and element) of the maximum major principal stress. For example, from the above contour, we can see the location of the element with the maximum major principal stress. However, we do not know the respective ply that has this maximum value. The newly created output vector Envelope Location Info will have this information. One can modify the contour/criteria style to display only the max value, min value or both. Because, we are interested in max value only, required changes were done using F6 (View Options) -> PostProcessing -> ontour/riteria Style -> Max Only. From the contour below, we can see that the maximum value of major principal stress is observed in ply 4. Maximum Major Principal Stress is observed in the output vector 1626, which corresponds to ply 4. This can be verified by checking the output vectors or from the sequence of output vectors listed below. 9. ADDITIONAL READING hapter 24: Laminates, NX Nastran User s Guide POMP and POMPS in NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide hapter 6: Element Reference Laminate Element and Solid Laminate Element in Femap User Guide I. M. Daniel and O. Ishai, Engineering Mechanics of omposite Materials, 2 nd Edition, 25. R. M. Jones, Mechanics of omposite Materials, 2 nd Edition, B. D. Agarwal, L. J. Broutman, and K. handrashekhara, Analysis and Performance of Fiber omposites, 3 rd Edition, 26. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 56 of 66

57 1. MATERIAL DATABASE This section provides material properties of some commonly used fibers, polymer resins, and fiber-reinforced polymer composite materials. Typically fibers are assumed to be isotropic. However, some references also considered transversely isotropic properties (different properties in longitudinal and transverse directions) for carbon fibers. Matrix materials are typically isotropic in nature. Table 2. Mechanical properties of commonly used fibers [4] Fiber Tensile Modulus (GPa) Tensile Strength (MPa) Density (kg/m 3 ) E-Glass S-Glass AS4 arbon IM7 arbon Kevlar Kevlar Boron Table 3. Mechanical properties of commonly used polymer resins [5] Resin Tensile Modulus (GPa) Tensile Strength (MPa) Density (kg/m 3 ) Epoxy Polycarbonate Polyethylene Polyurethane Polyvinyl hloride Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 57 of 66

58 Table 4. Mechanical properties of commonly used fiber-reinforced polymer composite materials Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 58 of 66

59 11. APPENDIX 11.1 LASSIAL LAMINATION THEORY The classical lamination theory (LT) is similar to the classical plate theory (PT), the only difference is that PT assumes that the material is isotropic, while the LT is an extension to fiber-reinforced composite laminates with multiple layers resulting in complicated stress-strain relations [6]. Similar to the Euler-Bernoulli beam theory and the plate theory, the LT is only valid for thin laminates (span and width > 1 thinckness) with small displacements in the transverse direction. The four cornerstones of the LT are the kinematic, constitutive, force resultant, and equilibrium equations KINEMATI EQUATIONS Here, u, v, and w are the displacements of the middle plane in the x, y, and z directions. Similarly, ε x, ε y, and γ xy are the mid-plane strains, and ĸ x, ĸ y, and ĸ xy are the curvatures ONSTITUTIVE EQUATIONS where the subscript k indicates the k th layer counting from the top of the laminate. Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 59 of 66

60 RESULTANTS The terms on the left hand side are force and moment resultants EQUILIBRIUM EQUATIONS STIFFNESS MATRIES A, B, AND D The relations between the resultants (forces N and moments M) and the strains (strains ε and curvatures ĸ) are of interest in composite laminates. By replacing the stresses in the force and moment resultants with strains via the constitutive equations, we have Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 6 of 66

61 By applying the summation and integration operations to their respective components, the force and moment resultants can be expressed as, The above equations can be expressed as, where A is called the extensional stiffness, B is called the coupling stiffness, and D is called the bending stiffness of the laminate. The components of these three stiffness matrices are defined as follows: Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 61 of 66

62 Here t k is the thickness of the k th layer and is the distance from the mid-plane to the centroid of the k th layer UNSYMMETRI LAYUP From the classical lamination theory, we have the following relation between force/moment resultants, and the strains and curvatures. For example consider only the axial force component N x. We have, N x = A 11 ε x + A 12 ε y + A 16 γ xy + B 11 κ x + B 12 κ y + 2B 16 κ xy For an isotropic material, we have only A 11 and A 12. The remaining components A 16, B 11, B 12, and B 16 are all zero. Thus, the axial force component in an isotropic material is related to inplane strains only. However, for composite laminates, Predictive Engineering Document, Feel Free to Share With Your olleagues Page 62 of 66

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