Bidirectional Thermo-Mechanical Properties of Foam Core Materials Using DIC
Polymer foam cored sandwich structures are often subjected to aggressive service conditions which may include elevated temperatures. A modified Arcan fixture (MAF) has been developed to characterize polymer foam materials with respect to their tensile, compressive, shear and bidirectional mechanical properties at room and at elevated temperatures. The MAF enables the realization of pure compression or high compression to shear bidirectional loading conditions that is not possible with conventional Arcan fixtures. The MAF is attached to a standard universal test machine equiped with an environmental chamber using specially designed grips that allow the specimen to rotate, and hence reduces paristic effects due to misalignment. The objective is to measure the unidirectional and bidirectional mechanical properties of PVC foam materials at elevated tempreature using digital image correlation (DIC), including the elastic constants and the stress-strain response to failure. To account for nonhomogeneity of the strain field across the specimen cross sections, a “correction factor” for the measured surface strain is determined using nonlinear finite element analysis (FEA). The final outcome is a set of validated mechanical properties that will form the basis input into a detailed finite element analysis (FEA) study of the nonlinear thermo-mechanical response of foam cored sandwich panels.
KeywordsPVC foam Modified Arcan fixture Digital image correlation Thermal degradation Finite element analysis
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