Advanced Performance Materials

, Volume 2, Issue 2, pp 161–176 | Cite as

Strength analysis for three-dimensional fiber reinforced composites

  • Kanehiro Nagai
  • Atsushi Yokoyama
  • Zen-Ichiro Maekawa
  • Hiroyuki Hamada


Three-dimensional fiber reinforced composite materials produced by impregnating resin into woven fabric have superior interlaminar and impact strength and are capable of being formed into complex shapes. Consequently it is expected in the future that they will be used for various structural members which have to date been difficult to make with conventional composite materials. With the growth in their fabrication technoloy, the development of a strength analysis method is being demanded. This paper describes a strength analysis method for three-dimensional composite materials on the basis of a micro-mechanical analysis of a unit cell. The unit cell is a small geometrical unit of fiber architecture. A feature of the present analysis method is to represent a unit cell as a rigid frame structure constructed of fiber-beam elements and matrix-beam and matrix-rod elements. Strength analyses are made for orthogonal weave and 5-axial weave three-dimensional carben/epoxy composite materials; the tensile, compressive, and shear moduli and strengths, and Poisson's ratio are calculated. The analytical results show fairly good agreement with experimental results; 11%, 21%, and 20% differences between them on the average for elastic moduli, strengths, and Poisson's ratios, respectively. It is also understood that the present idealized analysis model cannot accurately predict the characteristics of undulated fiber composites, especially in respect to the compressive strength.

Key words

finite-element method strength analysis three-dimensional composite material unit cell 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Allix, O. and Ledeveze, P. 1991. Damage Mechanics for 3D Composites.Proceeding of 10th Tsukuba General Symposium, 97–102.Google Scholar
  2. Byun, J.H., Gillespie, J.W., and Chou, T.-W. (1990). Mode I Delamination of a Three-Dimensional Fabric CompJournal of Composite Materials, 24: 497–518.Google Scholar
  3. Chou, T.-W., and Ko, F.K. (1989):Textile Structural Composites. Elsevier Science Publishing Company INC, New York, 139.Google Scholar
  4. Crane, R.M. and Camponeschi, E.T. 1986. Experimental and Analytical Characterization of Multi-dimensionally Braided Graphite/Epoxy Composites.Experimental Mechanics, 259–266.Google Scholar
  5. Dickinson, L., Mohamed, H., and Klang, E. 1990. Impact Resistance and Compressional Properties of Three Dimensional Woven Carbon/Epoxy Composites.Proceedings of the Fourth European Conference on Composite Materials, ECCM-4, 659–664.Google Scholar
  6. Florentine, R.A. 1988. 3-D Braiding Adapted to Air Foil Shapes Net Shape Contour Preforms.Proceedings of 33rd International SAMPE Symposium, 922–932.Google Scholar
  7. Guenon, V.A., Chou, T.W., and Gillespie, J.W. 1987. Interlaminar Fracture Toughness of a Three-Dimensional Fabric Composite.Proceedings of SME Fabricating Composites 87, 551.1–551.17.Google Scholar
  8. Hatta, H. 1988. Elastic Moduli and Thermal Expansion Coefficients of Three-Dimensional Fabric Composites.Transactions of the Japan Society of Composite Materials, (in Japanese) 14: 73–80Google Scholar
  9. Ko, F.K. 1986. Tensile Strength and Modulus of a Three-Dimensional Braided Composite.Composite Materials: Testing and Design (Seventh Conference), ASTM STP-893, 392–403.Google Scholar
  10. Ko, F.K., Fang, P., and Chu, H. 1988. 3-D Braided Commingled Carbon Fiber/PEEK Composites.Proceedings of 33rd International SAMPE Symposium, 899–911.Google Scholar
  11. Ko. F.K. and Hartman, D. 1986. Impact Behavior of 2-D and 3-D Glass/Epoxy Composites.Proceedings of 31st International SAMPE Symposium, 1272–1284.Google Scholar
  12. Ko, F.K. and Pastore, C.M. 1985. Structure and Properties of an Integrated 3-D Fabric for Structural Composites.Recent Advances in Composites in the United States and Japan, ASTM STP-864, 428–439.Google Scholar
  13. Lei, C.S.C., Wang, A.S.D., and Ko, F.K. 1988. A Finite Cell Model for 3-D Braided Composites.Proceedings of ASME Winter Annual Meeting, 45–50.Google Scholar
  14. Ma, C.L., Yang, J.M., and Chou, T.W. 1986. Elastic Stiffness of Three-Dimensional Braided Textile Structural Composite.Composite Materials: Testing and Design (Seventh Conference), ASTM STP-893, 404–421.Google Scholar
  15. Mohamed, M.H. (1990). Three-dimensional Textiles.American Scientist, 78: 530–541.Google Scholar
  16. Nagai, K., Yokoyama, A., Maekawa, Z., and Hamada, H. 1992. The study of Analytical Method for Three-Dimensional Composite Materials.Transactions of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers, (in Japanese) 58-A: 2099–2103.Google Scholar
  17. Verpoest, I., Wevers, M., Ivens, J., and DeMeester, P. 1990. 3D-Fabrics for Compression and Impact Resistant Composite Sandwich Structures.Proceedings of 35th International SAMPE Symposium, 296–307.Google Scholar
  18. Whitney, T.J. and Chou, T.W. 1989. Modeling of 3-D Angle-Interlock Textile Structural Composites.Journal of Composite Materials, 23: 890–911.Google Scholar
  19. Yang, J.M. 1987. Analysis and Design of Three-Dimensional Composites.Proceedings of SME Composites in Manufacturing, 7: 832.1–832.11.Google Scholar
  20. Yamamoto, T. and Hirokawa, T. 1990. Advanced Joint of 3-D Composite Materials for Space Structure.Proceedings of 35th International SAMPE Symposium, 1069–1078.Google Scholar
  21. Yamamoto, T., Nishiyama, S., and Nagai, K. 1993.Study on Weaving Method/Strength Analysis for Three-Dimensional Textile Structural Composites. Mitsubishi Juko Giho (in Japanese), 30:503–506.Google Scholar
  22. Yang, J.M. (1987) Analysis and Design of Three-Dimensional Composites.Proceedings of SME Composites in Manufacturing, 7; 832.1–832.11.Google Scholar
  23. Yang, J.M., Ma, C.L., and Chou, T.W. (1986. Fiber Inclination Model of Three-Dimensional Textile Structural Composites.Journal of Composite Materials, 20: 472–483.Google Scholar
  24. Yasui, Y., Hori, F., Mita, Y., and Kondoh, T. 1993. Development of a 5 Axis Three-Dimensional Weaving Machine.Proceeding of 46th, (in Japanese) 28–29.Google Scholar
  25. Yokoyama, A., Kobayashi, H., Hamada, H., and Maekawa, Z. (1989) Braided Composites (2nd Report, Estimation of the Mechanical Properties of Braided Composites by Numerical Analysis Method).Transactions of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers, (in Japanese) 55-A: 1942–1947.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kanehiro Nagai
    • 1
  • Atsushi Yokoyama
    • 2
  • Zen-Ichiro Maekawa
    • 3
  • Hiroyuki Hamada
    • 3
  1. 1.Nagoya Aerospace Systems WorksMitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.NagoyaJapan
  2. 2.Mie UniversityTsu, MieJapan
  3. 3.Kyoto Institute of TechnologyKyotoJapan

Personalised recommendations