Damage Characterization, Structural Health Monitoring and Residual Life Prediction of Advanced Composites

The principal goal of the research is to develop a monitoring system for impact damage in advanced composites using distributed sensors. The developed framework comprises efficient and accurate multi-scale models, sensor placement design, damage detection and residual life assessment to provide accurate life cycle estimates of heterogeneous aerospace structural components. The research is sponsored by the U. S. Army Research Office (ARO).

It is expected that the multidisciplinary procedure, integrating physics-based models, computational techniques and experiments will have direct impact to the Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center (AMRDEC), Redstone Arsenal, AL, where composite launch tubes are currently being used and filament wound motorcades are under development. The integration of appropriate failure models will provide the opportunity to accurately estimate the residual life of these mission critical components. The research will also be useful in addressing other U. S. Army applications including some of the problems associated with the applications of advanced composites in weapon systems and rotary wing aircraft. In a broader sense, the research outcome will be beneficial in assessing structural reliability and residual life prediction of advanced composites under high strain rate loading.