Experimental analysis and simulation of low-velocity impact damage of composite laminates

O. Falcó*, C. S. Lopes, D. E. Sommer, D. Thomson, R. L. Ávila, B. H.A.H. Tijs

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


The capability to accurately analyse the response of multi-directional composite laminates during impact events is of high importance for the design of lightweight aircraft structures. In this work, both experimental and numerical analyses are performed covering a large design-space of laminates for all aspects from on-set of damage and barely visible impact damage up to clearly visible impact damage and full penetration of the laminates. The impact tests are simulated using a sophisticated three-dimensional continuum damage model, combined with an automated meso-scale model generation algorithm for ply-by-ply, material/fibre-aligned meshing of laminated composite coupons. To assess the accuracy of the predictions, an extensive validation test program of several configurations and impact energies has been performed, thus demonstrating that the simulations are capable of accurately predicting the damage and failure mechanisms under low-velocity impact loading. Not only the evolution of impact loads and energy dissipated are numerically analysed, but the competition of the dominant failure mechanisms from low impact energy and full penetration cases are also macroscopically replicated.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115278
Number of pages18
JournalComposite Structures
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project https://www.openaccess.nl/en/you-share-we-take-care
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Carbon fibre reinforced polymer
  • Computational modelling
  • Finite Element Analysis (FEA)
  • Impact behaviour


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