Mechanical Response of Composite Reinforced Aluminum Foam Sandwich Systems for Automotive Structures
This paper presents the design and manufacture a sandwich structure bumper beam that could withstand at least the same load required to have plastic deformation in a 2002 Jeep Wrangler bumper beam at a lower weight. The dimensions from a bumper beam were scaled down in order to match the limiting length of the sandwich structure specimens. Theoretical optimization calculations were conducted in order to find the optimal dimensions and face thicknesses for the hybrid structures. Sandwich panels were based on Glass Fiber Reinforced Polypropylene (Twintex) and an Aluminum foam core (Alporas). Three point bending tests were performed on the sandwich structures. The resulting failure modes were revealed and found to be in agreement with those offered by the analytical predictions.