Vol. 1, No. 1, 2006

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ISSN: 1559-3959
Metal sandwich plates with polymer foam-filled cores

A. Vaziri, Z. Xue and J. W. Hutchinson

Vol. 1 (2006), No. 1, 97–127
Abstract

The role of low-density structural polymeric foams filling the interstices of the cores of metal sandwich plates is studied to ascertain the strengthening of the cores and the enhancement of plate performance under crushing and impulsive loads. Square honeycomb and folded plate steel cores filled with two densities of structural foams are studied. The foam makes direct contributions to core strength and stiffness, but its main contribution is in supplying lateral support to core members thereby enhancing the buckling strength of these members. Performance is assessed at fixed total weight of the sandwich plate such that the weight of the foam is traded against that of the metal. The outcome of the comparative study suggests that plates with foam-filled cores can perform as well, or nearly as well, as plates of the same weight with unfilled cores. The decision on use of foams in the cores is therefore likely to rest on multifunctional advantages such as acoustic and thermal insulation or environmental isolation of core interstices.

Keywords
polymeric foams, sandwich plates, honeycomb cores, folded plate cores, impulsive loads
Milestones
Received: 9 May 2005
Revised: 7 September 2005
Accepted: 24 September 2005
Published: 1 May 2006
Authors
A. Vaziri
Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Harvard University
Cambridge MA 02138
Z. Xue
Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Harvard University
Cambridge MA 02138
J. W. Hutchinson
Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Harvard University
Cambridge MA 02138