Numerical stress analysis in hybrid adhesive joint with non-linear materials

University dissertation from Luleå, Sweden : Luleå University of Technology

Abstract: This thesis presents systematic numerical study of stresses in the adhesive of a single-lap joint subjected to various loading scenarios (mechanical and thermal loading). The main objective of this work is to improve understanding of the main material and geometrical parameters determining performance of adhesive joint for the future analysis of failure initiation and development in these structures.The first part of the thesis deals with development of a 3D model as well as 2D model, optimized with respect to the computational efficiency by use of novel displacement coupling conditions able to correctly represent monoclinic materials (off-axis layers of composite laminates). The model takes into account the nonlinearity of materials (adherend and adhesive) with geometrical nonlinearity also accounted for. The parameters of geometry of the joint are normalized with respect to the dimensions of adhesive (e.g. thickness) thus making analysis of results more general and applicable to wide range of different joints. Optimal geometry of the single-lap joint is selected based on results of the parametric analysis by using peel and shear stress distributions in the adhesive layer as a criteria and it allows separation of edge and end effects. Three different types of single lap joint with similar and dissimilar (hybrid) materials are considered: a) metal-metal; b) composite-composite; c) composite-metal. In case of composite laminates, four lay-ups are evaluated: uni-directional ([08]T and [908]T) and quasi-isotropic laminates ([0/45/90/-45]S and [90/45/0/-45]S). The influence of the abovementioned parameters is carefully examined by analyzing peel and shear stress distributions in the adhesive layer. Discussion and conclusions with respect to the magnitude of the stress concentration at the ends of the joint overlap as well as overall level of stresses within overlap are presented. Recommendations concerning use of nonlinear material model are given.The rest of the work is related to the various methods of manufacturing of joint (curing) and application of thermo-mechanical loading suitable to these scenarios. The appropriate sequences of application of thermal and mechanical loads for the analysis of the residual thermal stresses developed due to manufacturing of joints at elevated temperature required to cure polymer (adhesive/composite) are proposed. It is shown that the most common approach used in many studies of simple superposition of thermal and mechanical stresses works well only for linear materials and produces wrong results if material is non-linear. The model and simulation technique presented in the current thesis rectifies this issue and accurate stress distributions are obtained. Based on the analysis of these stress distributions the following conclusions can be made: joint processing at elevated temperature causes high stresses inside the adhesive layer; the residual thermal stresses will reduce the peel stress concentration at the ends of overlap joint and the shear stress within the overlap, moreover, this effect is more pronounced for the case of the one-step joint manufacturing in comparison with two-step processing technique.This study has generated a lot of results for better understand of behavior of adhesive joints and it will help in design of stronger, more durable adhesive single-lap joints in the future.