Least-weight composite plates with unconventional stacking sequences: Design, analysis and experiments
Article dans une revue avec comité de lecture
This study deals with the problem of the least-weight design of a composite multilayer plate subject to constraints of different nature (mechanical, geometrical and technological requirements). To face this problem, a multi-scale two-level (MS2L) design methodology is proposed. This approach aims at optimising simultaneously both geometrical and mechanical parameters of the laminate at each characteristic scale (mesoscopic and macroscopic ones). In this background, at the first level (macroscopic scale) the goal is to find the optimum value of geometrical and mechanical design variables minimising the structure mass and satisfying the set of imposed constraints (on first buckling load, membrane stiffness and feasibility constraints). The second-level problem (mesoscopic scale) aims at finding at least one stacking sequence meeting the geometrical and material parameters provided by the first-level problem. The MS2L optimisation approach is based on the polar formalism to describe the macroscopic behaviour of the composite (in the framework of the equivalent single layer theories) and on a special genetic algorithm to perform optimisation calculations. The optimum solutions provided by the MS2L optimisation strategy are characterised by a weight saving of about 10% with enhanced mechanical properties when compared to conventional symmetric balanced stacks. The effectiveness of the optimum solutions is also proven through an experimental campaign of buckling tests. The experimental results are in excellent agreement with those foreseen by the numerical simulations.
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