Finite element based dynamic analysis of multilayer fibre composite sandwich plates with interlayer delaminations

  • Jayatilake, Indunil N. ;
  • Karunasena, Warna ;
  • Lokuge, Weena
  • Received : 2015.05.14
  • Accepted : 2015.06.27
  • Published : 2016.01.25


Although the aircraft industry was the first to use fibre composites, now they are increasingly used in a range of structural applications such as flooring, decking, platforms and roofs. Interlayer delamination is a major failure mode which threatens the reliability of composite structures. Delamination can grow in size under increasing loads with time and hence leads to severe loss of structural integrity and stiffness reduction. Delamination reduces the natural frequency and as a consequence may result in resonance. Hence, the study of the effects of delamination on the free vibration behaviour of multilayer composite structures is imperative. The focus of this paper is to develop a 3D FE model and investigate the free vibration behaviour of fibre composite multilayer sandwich panels with interlayer delaminations. A series of parametric studies are conducted to assess the influence of various parameters of concern, using a commercially available finite element package. Additionally, selected points in the delaminated region are connected appropriately to simulate bolting as a remedial measure to fasten the delamination region in the aim of reducing the effects of delamination. First order shear deformation theory based plate elements have been used to model each sandwich layer. The findings suggest that the delamination size and the end fixity of the plate are the most important factors responsible for stiffness reduction due to delamination damage in composite laminates. It is also revealed that bolting the delaminated region can significantly reduce the natural frequency variation due to delamination thereby improving the dynamic performance.


fibre composite multilayer plates;three dimensional modelling;dynamic analysis;free vibration behaviour;delamination


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