Influence of core properties on the failure of composite sandwich beams

Isaac M. Daniel*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


The initiation of failure in composite sandwich beams is heavily dependent on properties of the core material. Several core materials, including PVC foams and balsa wood were characterized. The various failure modes occurring in composite sandwich beams are described and their relationship to the relevant core properties is explained and discussed. Under flexural loading of sandwich beams, plastic yielding or cracking of the core occurs when the critical yield stress or strength (usually shear) of the core is reached. Indentation under localized loading depends principally on the square root of the core yield stress. The critical stress for facesheet wrinkling is related to the core Young's and shear moduli in the thickness direction. Experimental mechanics methods were used to illustrate the failure modes and verify analytical predictions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1271-1286
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Mechanics of Materials and Structures
Issue number7-8
StatePublished - 2009


  • Characterization
  • Core materials
  • Experimental methods
  • Failure modes
  • Sandwich structures
  • Strength

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Applied Mathematics

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