Compression failure of carbon fiber-epoxy laminates in fire

Burns, L, Feih, S and Mouritz, A 2010, 'Compression failure of carbon fiber-epoxy laminates in fire', Journal of Aircraft, vol. 47, no. 2, pp. 528-533.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Compression failure of carbon fiber-epoxy laminates in fire
Author(s) Burns, L
Feih, S
Mouritz, A
Year 2010
Journal name Journal of Aircraft
Volume number 47
Issue number 2
Start page 528
End page 533
Total pages 6
Publisher American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Inc.
Abstract This paper investigates the compression failure of carbon fiber-epoxy laminates when exposed to fire. The investigation gives insights into the softening and failure of carbon-epoxy laminates supporting compression loads in the event of aircraft fire. A thermomechanical model is presented for calculating the compression properties and failure of polymer matrix laminates under combined loading and one-sided heating by fire. The accuracy of the model to predict the failure time of carbon-epoxy laminates at different compression load levels and fire temperatures is determined with structural fire tests performed on woven carbon-epoxy panels. The model predicts a gradual increase in the failure time of the laminate with decreasing compression stress (down to 10% of the room temperature buckling load) and decreasing heat flux (or temperature) of the fire. This was confirmed by the fire tests, which showed good agreement between the calculated and measured failure times. Compression failure of the laminate usually occurred within relatively short times (less than a few minutes) by viscous softening of the polymer matrix. For long failure times, matrix decomposition was shown to influence the failure process. Parametric analysis using the model reveals that raising the glass transition temperature of the polymer matrix increases the compression failure time of laminates in fire. However, only small improvements to the failure time are achieved by raising the glass transition temperature of laminates exposed to high-temperature fires typical of postcrash aircraft accidents.
Keyword(s) Buckling loads
Carbon fiber-epoxy laminates
Carbon-epoxy laminates
Combined loading
Compression failure
Compression loads
Compression properties
Compression stress
Failure process
Failure time
Fire tests
Glass transition temperature
High temperature
Matrix decomposition
Parametric analysis
Room temperature
Structural fires
Thermomechanical model
DOI - identifier 10.2514/1.45065
Copyright notice © 2010 by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Inc. All rights reserved.
ISSN 0021-8669
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 19 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 17 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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