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Mechanical Engineering Seminars - Finite Element Analysis to Predict Fatigue Failure of Hybrid Joints Subjected to Fully Reversed Loading

Douglas D.Dow
Graduate Student
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Maine, Orono, ME 04469


The U.S. Navy has a need to build stealthier, faster vessels while at the same time maintaining a high degree of structural integrity. Glass Reinforced Polymers (GRP’s) could help achieve this due to their inherent material characteristics. High strength, low weight, corrosion resistance, minimal electromagnetic signature, and elaborate forming capabilities are properties which make GRP’s advantageous in marine applications. Previous studies have shown that GRP’s alone lack the overall stiffness that is necessary for medium to long length ships, however, a ship with a metallic skeleton and composite outer shell could solve this issue. This type of design would require the incorporation of hybrid composite/metal connections, of which a comprehensive study is needed to ensure that structural failures are avoided. Existing finite element modeling software offers a robust tactic for assessing the integrity of proposed hybrid connections. This seminar will include, in relation to this research, an overview of previous work completed, the process of composite fabrication, the experimental test setup, and finite element modeling techniques using ANSYS.


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