Failure modes of composite sandwich beams

I. M. Daniel*, E. E. Gdoutos, K. A. Wang, J. L. Abot

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

137 Scopus citations


An investigation was conducted of failure modes and criteria for their occurrence in composite sandwich beams. The initiation of the various failure modes depends on the material properties of the constituents (facings and core), geometric dimensions and type of loading. The beams were made of unidirectional carbon/epoxy facings and aluminum honeycomb and PVC closed-cell foam cores. The constituent materials were fully characterized and in the case of the foam core, failure envelopes were developed for general two-dimensional states of stress. Sandwich beams were loaded under bending moment and shear and failure modes were observed and compared with analytical predictions. The failure modes investigated are face sheet compressive failure, adhesive bond failure, indentation failure, core failure and facing wrinkling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)309-334
Number of pages26
JournalInternational Journal of Damage Mechanics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2002


  • Cellular foams
  • Composite sandwich beams
  • Compressive failure
  • Core failure
  • Failure modes
  • Indentation
  • Sandwich construction
  • Wrinkling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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