Deformation and damage evolution of a full-scale adhesive joint between a steel bracket and a sandwich panel for naval application

Pankaj R Jaiswal, R Iyer Kumar, M Saeedifar, MN Saleh, Geert Luyckx, W De Waele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The increasing interest for the application of adhesive joints in naval superstructures motivates researchers to gain an in-depth understanding of the mechanical behaviour and failure mechanisms of these joints. This work reports on an experimental study of the deformation behaviour and damage evolution of a full-scale multi-material joint using different instrumentation techniques. Adhesively bonded joints of steel to sandwich panel components have been subjected to quasi-static tensile tests during which the global deformation of the joint and local strain distributions were monitored using digital image correlation (DIC). During one particular tensile test, fibre optic Bragg sensors (FBG) were also applied to the specimen’s surface at different locations in order to quantify the evolution of local strains. Additionally, acoustic emission (AE) sensors were installed in order to monitor damage initiation and evolution with increasing levels of imposed deformation. This test showcased adhesive failure at the interface of the steel adherend and the adhesive, while cohesive failure was observed within the adhesive and skin failure at the interface between adhesive and the composite skin of the sandwich panel. The post-mortem observed failures modes were compared to the acoustic events that originated during the test due to damage initiation and propagation within the joint. The evolution of the different sensor signals, i.e. the damage expressed as cumulative AE energy and local strains measured with Bragg sensors and DIC, are mutually compared and acceptable correlation is found.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science
Issue number0
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Adhesive
  • acoustic emission
  • damage characterisation
  • digital image correlation
  • failure mode
  • fibre optic Bragg sensors
  • joints
  • multi-material

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