Interest in 3D woven carbon fibre composites has increased within industries such as aerospace, automotive and marine, due to their high strength to weight ratio, their increased tailorability and their capacity to be manufactured into near net shape preforms, thereby reducing parts count, assembly time, labour intensity and costs. It is vital that critical areas of concern such as damage (and in particular damage, initiation and development) are studied and understood, thereby reducing the limiting factors to their acceptance. The damage initiation and subsequent intervals of development for ILSS (Interlaminar Shear Strength) were determined experimentally. Particular focus is paid to the significance of binder edge and binder middle testing and the influence of through-the-thickness (T-T-T) reinforcement in relation to damage types and development. Control samples for binder edge and binder middle loading locations were tested to failure as a means of determining an average point of failure, allowing the generation of testing intervals. The performance and architecture of samples from each incremental interval were characterised using a combination of graphical analysis and optical microscopy with the aid of dye-penetrant to highlight fibre damage and matrix cracking. Samples displayed specific damage initiation points, thus allowing the generation of a damage guide relating to applied force. In addition, the results imply that a relationship exists between the location of applied load and subsequent damage, thus showing the significant influence played by the T-T-T binder loading location on damage development within 3D woven carbon fibre composites.
|POLYMERS & POLYMER COMPOSITES
|Published (in print/issue) - 2007