Mechanical characterisation and numerical modelling of 3D woven composites
2014-11-13T09:16:44Z (GMT) by
Three-dimensional woven composites were developed to improve the through-thickness properties which conventional two-dimensional laminate composites currently lack. However, these textile composites generally show lower in-plane mechanical properties due to fibre crimping, and also encounter modelling difficulties due to the complex geometries. In this thesis, the static and fatigue mechanical behaviour of several types of 3D woven composites were experimentally characterised, the influence of the weave architecture on the mechanical performance was revealed, and meso/macro scale numerical models with improved failure criteria were developed to simulate the tensile behaviour of the 3D woven composites. The mechanical characterisation was conducted on six woven structures under tension, compression, and flexural loading, and were also carried out on two weaves under open-hole quasi-static tensile and fatigue loading. Digital image correlation and thermoelastic stress analysis were used to characterise the strain and damage development during static and fatigue loading. The testing results showed that the angle-interlock weave W-3 had higher in-plane quasi-static properties, lower notch sensitivity, higher fatigue damage resistance, but lower delamination resistance. The meso-scale model was developed on the unit cell of the woven structure and the macro-scale model (mosaic model) was created on the testing samples. Both un-notched and notched tensile behaviour were modelled for the angle-interlock weave W-3 and a one-by-one orthogonal weave W-1, and the difference between the predicted and experimental results was within 16% for the unit cell models and within 21% for the mosaic models. A modified failure criterion was developed to better simulate the damage behaviour of the notched macro-scale model and improved the predicted notched strength by 10-20%. Whilst further experimental investigation and improvement in the modelling techniques are still required, the data presented in this thesis provided an essential update for the current 3D woven composites research, and the presented models offered the potential to predict the damage behaviour of large 3D woven structures.