Adaptive modelling of delamination initiation and propagation using an equivalent single-layer shell approach
Journal article, 2017
A major challenge for crash failure analysis of laminated composites is to find a modelling approach, which is both sufficiently accurate, for example, able to capture delaminations, and computationally efficient to allow full-scale vehicle crash simulations. Addressing this challenge, we propose a methodology based on an equivalent single-layer shell formulation which is adaptively through-the-thickness refined to capture initiating and propagating delaminations. To be specific, single shell elements through the laminate thickness are locally and adaptively enriched using the extended finite element method such that delaminations can be explicitly modelled without having to be represented by separate elements. Furthermore, the shell formulation is combined with a stress recovery technique which increases the accuracy of predicting delamination initiations. The paper focuses on the parameters associated with identifying, introducing and extending the enrichment areas; especially on the impact of these parameters on the resulting structural deformation behaviour. We conclude that the delamination enrichment must be large enough to allow the fracture process to be accurately resolved, and we propose a suitable approach to achieve this. The proposed methodology for adaptive delamination modelling shows potential for being computationally efficient, and thereby, it has the potential to enable efficient and accurate full vehicle crash simulations of laminated composites.
extended finite element method