Vibration of a thin-walled carbon fibre corrugated circular cylinder under external water pressure

Carl T. F. Ross*, Andrew P. F. Little, Philipp Köster, Giles Tewkesbury

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The paper reports on a theoretical and an experimental investigation carried out on a thin-walled corrugated carbon fibre circular cylinder in air and also under external water pressure. This corrugated circular cylinder was invented by Ross in 1987. The theoretical investigation was carried out using the finite element analysis to model both the structure and the fluid. The theoretical investigation used two different programs, one of which was the giant computer program ANSYS and the other was an in-house program developed by Ross and Little. For the shell structure, the ANSYS program used two different doubly curved thin-walled shell elements, while the in-house program used a simpler axisymmetric thin-walled shell element. This axisymmetric element allowed a sinusoidal variation of the displacements in the circumferential direction, thus, decreasing preparation and computational time. Agreement between the different finite elements was found to be quite good. The investigation also found that there was good correlation between experiment and theory for the in-house software, but was a little disappointing when using ANSYS. Errors may, however, have occurred with the experimental results, as the model was hand-made and neither its geometry nor its material properties were perfect. It was found particularly encouraging for the in-house software to give better results than ANSYS, as the in-house software only took a few hours to set up the computer model, and a few seconds to analyse the vessel, whereas the ANSYS software took several weeks to set up the computer model, and several minutes to analyse the shell. The ANSYS software, however, did have the advantage in producing excellent graphical displays in both the pre-processing and post-processing modes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)542-553
Number of pages12
JournalThin-walled Structures
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2006


  • carbon fibres
  • corrugated vessels
  • finite elements
  • thin-walled shells
  • vibration
  • water pressure

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