Crushing behaviour of aluminum foam-filled composite tubes
An experimental study has been conducted in order to determine the effect of Al-foam filling on the composite and hybrid (Al metal and composite) composite tubes.Tubes and fillers used in the experiments were prepared using the tube rolling and foaming from powder compacts methods, respectively. The composite was prepared using E-glass fiber fabric (2x2 twill fiber construction of 165 g/m2 areal density) and polyester matrix with a 45/45 fiber angle to the tube axis. The quasi-static crush tests were conducted axially on the empty, hybrid and foam filled tubes at 25 mm/min crosshead speed. The deformation sequences of the tubes were further recorded during the tests in order to identify the crushing modes of the tubes. Two failure mechanisms literally known as progressive crushing and catastrophic failure (compression shear) were observed during the crushing of empty composite tubes. The progressive crushing mode leaded to higher crushing loads hence Specific Absorbed Energies (SAE). The predominant progressive crushing mode of empty tubes of thinner wall section was attributed to the surface end defects introduced during sectioning of the tubes. In hybrid tubes, the deformation mode of Al tube was found to be a more complex form of the diamond mode of deformation, leading to higher SAE values than the sum of the SAEs of empty composite and empty metal tube. The increased load and SAE values ofhybrid tubes were attributed to the constraining effect of the composite to the metal tube folding. Results further showed that when the progressive crushing mode was taken into account hybrid tubes had lower SAE values than those of empty composite tubes. The foam filling of the composite tubes however showed two different results. It increased the foam filled tube crush loads over the sum of the crush loads of empty composite tube and foam. In the latter case it was not effective in increasing crush loads over the sum of the crush loads of empty composite tube and foam in the progressive crushing region. These two effects were discussed in terms of possible interactions between composite tube and foam.