Analysis of Thick Laminated Composite Beams using Variational Asymptotic Method
Ameen, Maqsood Mohammed
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An asymptotically-exact methodology is presented for obtaining the cross-sectional stiffness matrix of a pre-twisted, moderately-thick beam having rectangular cross sections and made of transversely isotropic material. The beam is modelled with-out assumptions from 3-D elasticity. The strain energy of the beam is computed making use of the constitutive law and the kinematical relations derived with the inclusion of geometrical nonlinearities and initial twist. Large displacements and rotations are allowed, but small strain is assumed. The Variational Asymptotic Method (VAM) is used to minimize the energy functional, thereby reducing the cross section to a point on the reference line with appropriate properties, yielding a 1-D constitutive law. In this method as applied herein, the 2-D cross-sectional analysis is performed asymptotically by taking advantage of a material small parameter and two geometric small parameters. 3-D strain components are derived using kinematics and arranged as orders of the small parameters. Warping functions are obtained by the minimisation of strain energy subject to certain set of constraints that renders the 1-D strain measures well-defined. Closed-form expressions are derived for the 3-D non-linear warping and stress fields. The model is capable of predicting interlaminar and transverse shear stresses accurately up to first order.