Effect of Epoxy-Based Structural Foam on Energy Management: An Experimental & Analytical Investigation
The effect of epoxy-based structural foam on strength, stiffness, and energy absorption of foam filled structural components is investigated and implemented to formulate design guide-lines that can be used in enhancing weight reduction and engineering functions of systems. An experimental approach is first utilized to identify design variables such as foam density, gage, and foam layer thickness, that are needed to enhance the weight/ performance ratio of structural hat-section components. A CAE approach using non-linear, large deformation finite element analysis is used to model the hat-section components. An acceptance level of confidence in the CAE analytical tools is then established based on comparisons of results between the two approaches. Upon that, the CAE analytical tools are deployed in a sensitivity study to quantify the crush/crash characteristics of foam-filled hat-section components with respect to the changes in the afore mentioned design variables.