Low-velocity impact responses and CAI properties of synthetic foam sandwiches

Jun Wang*, Jing Li, Hota GangaRao, Ruifeng Liang, Jiye Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

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This paper presents experimental and analytical studies on impact and compression after impact (CAI) responses of sandwiches with glass fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) skins and synthetic foam cores under low-velocity impacting. The impact test results showed that the penetration depth of GFRP panels with synthetic foam is much smaller than that of bare synthetic foam panels. The edgewise compression test results indicated the facesheet debonding dominates the failure mode of the sandwich panels without lattice webs, while the failure mode of the sandwich panels with lattice webs is predominated by the wrinkling and delamination of the facesheets and the crushing of foam core. The influences of applied impact energy, GFRP lay-up, synthetic foam density and the existence of webs on the impact and post impact behavior of sandwich panels are discussed herein. Analytical models are proposed to predict the residual ultimate edgewise compressive load capacity of sandwich panels with lattice webs after impacts, using energy principles and variational methods in applied mechanics. The influences from impact damage, the local buckling of the facesheets and the confined strength of the foam core are measured and compared well with proposed analytical models.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)412-422
Number of pages11
JournalComposite Structures
Early online date6 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2019


  • Composites
  • Compression after impact (CAI)
  • Low-velocity impact
  • Sandwich
  • Synthetic foam


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