Integrating allowable design strains in composites with whole life value

Mark Price, Adrian Murphy, Joe Butterfield, Brian Falzon, Damian Quinn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Fibre-Reinforced Plastics (FRPs) have been used in civil aerospace vehicles for decades. The current state-of-the-art in airframe design and manufacture results in approximately half the airframe mass attributable to FRP materials. The continual increase in the use of FRP materials over metallic alloys is attributable to the material's superior specific strength and stiffness, fatigue performance and corrosion resistance. However, the full potential of these materials has yet to be exploited as analysis methods to predict physical failure with equal accuracy and robustness are not yet available. The result is a conservative approach to design, but one that can bring benefit via increased inspection intervals and reduced cost over the vehicle life. The challenge is that the methods used in practice are based on empirical tests and real relationships and drivers are difficult to see in this complex process and so the trade-off decision is challenging and uncertain. The aim of this feasibility study was to scope a viable process which could help develop some rules and relationships based on the fundamental mechanics of composite material and the economics of production and operation, which would enhance understanding of the role and impact of design allowables across the life of a composite structure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)278-283
Number of pages6
JournalProcedia CIRP
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Composites
  • Damage
  • Impact
  • Surplus Value
  • Value Driven Design
  • Whole Life

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