Evaluation of Syntactic Foam for Energy Absorption at Low to Moderate Loading Rates
Many structural applications require the use of lightweight energy absorbing materials for the increase in mass efficiency. Sandwich composite structures have been implemented to fill this need in both aerospace and marine applications. To maximize the structural performance the core material should have excellent compressive stiffness and strength as well as good shear strength. Recently syntactic foams have been developed to offer a simple cost effective method to produce a number of complex molded shapes with high relative energy and stiffness. This study compared the mechanical properties of traditional foams and recently developed syntactic foams to determine the energy absorbing characteristics at low and moderate rates of loading. Test results were fit to a phenomenological model to further study the mechanical behavior. Results from this study will demonstrate the need for the development of new, efficient cellular material for energy absorption and protection applications.
KeywordsSyntactic Foam Energy Absorption Strain Rate
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