Influence of Composite Skin on the Energy Absorption Characteristics of an Aircraft Fuselage
In aviation history, accidents during landing are more frequent compared to other phases of flight and in most cases the aircraft is forced to make an emergency belly landing when landing gear malfunctions. This study aims to analyse the energy absorption of a typical composite aircraft fuselage section under such crash belly landing. A finite element model of this composite fuselage section was created and analyzed using LS-Dyna finite element software and the effects of different composite materials on the energy absorption of fuselage section were studied. Four different composite materials that are commonly used in aerospace application were selected for the purpose of the present study namely glass/epoxy, graphite/epoxy, Kevlar/epoxy, and boron/epoxy. An impact velocity of 7 m/s against rigid ground was considered. Results showed that frames and skin contribute the most in energy absorption while the passenger floor and strut contribute the least. Moreover, it was found that fuselage skin made of glass/epoxy absorbed more energy compared to other materials and it had the highest specific energy absorption.
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