Influence of Welded Joints on the Crashworthiness Response of Hybrid Structural Elements 2013-01-0755
In this paper, the effect of welded joints on the crashworthiness response of a hybrid system is presented. This hybrid system consists of a steel enclosure filled with different core materials: carbon-fiber reinforced polymer, glass-fiber reinforced polyamide, polyethylene terephthalate foam and natural cork conglomerate. The metallic enclosure is a cold-formed tube which has to be spot-welded to assemble the final design. The focus is set on the assessment of the effect of the pattern and the number of spot welds on the crashworthiness results in terms of absorbed energy. Results show that variations in the number or the geometric distribution of the spot welds have a direct and noticeable effect on the final amount of energy that the part can dissipate. This is due to the crushing mechanism of the metallic column which is highly sensitive to the way that cold-formed sections are joined. From these results, several design recommendations can be proposed for the design of hybrid elements with welded joints, depending on the geometrical and material properties of the system.