Experimental and Numerical Investigation of Sandwich Structures Subject to Blast Loading

Jefferson Townsend Wright, University of Rhode Island


Sandwich panels have shown improved air blast performance over more traditional monolithic armor however it is an area of continuous research in order to optimize the beneficial shock mitigative properties of the sandwich structure. To that end a series of shock experiments on various sandwich panels via shock tube with high speed photography and numerical analyses via finite element method were performed to determine their efficacy for shock mitigation. Originally corrugated steel core sandwich panels were investigated varying face sheet thickness, corrugation thickness, boundary conditions, and foam infill. The hierarchy of foam infilling within the core was then iterated on and lastly, the corrugated core was replaced with an open cell foam core entrained with various Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluids to determine their behavior under shock loading. These results found that foam infilling had the greatest impact upon shock performance although the benefit decreased with increased face or corrugation thickness (increasing stiffness). When selectively filling the foam hierarchy within the core it was found that back filled (soft/hard) arrangements to be the most effective but using the foam alternately to attenuate the shock wave was not effective. Lastly, the various non-Newtonian fluid fillings were found to have detrimental effect on the performance of the sandwich structures while often being weighty.

Subject Area

Mechanical engineering

Recommended Citation

Jefferson Townsend Wright, "Experimental and Numerical Investigation of Sandwich Structures Subject to Blast Loading" (2017). Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access). Paper AAI10267462.