To read this content please select one of the options below:

Damage tolerance of composite T-sections made of cost-effective carbon fibre preforms

Martin Kadlec (Department of Strength of Structures, Aerospace Research and Test Establishment (VZLU), Prague, Czech Republic.)
Robin Hron (Strength of Structures, Aerospace Research and Test Establishment (VZLU), Prague, Czech Republic)
Timo Grieser (Institut fuer Verbundwerkstoffe GmbH, Kaiserslautern, Germany)

International Journal of Structural Integrity

ISSN: 1757-9864

Article publication date: 2 February 2015




T-sections of carbon fibre-reinforced composites are prone to delamination because they lack reinforcement through their thicknesses. The purpose of this paper is to present the structural response of cost-effective laminated T-sections when subjected to various types of loads and impacts.


The core of the automated manufactured beams is analysed. Pull-off, flange tension, and flange bending were tested for specimens extracted from an I-beam. The failure processes for all of the specimens were investigated in detail, leading to the statistical evaluation of the failure modes.


A correlation is apparent between the impact damage energy and certain fracture patterns. These results can be used to assess damage tolerance when designing stiffeners, beams, and various complex structures. The increase in strength by 25 per cent was measured for the advanced stitching located in the web section for the flange tension test.


The resistance displayed by the T-sections toward impact damage was studied experimentally, as the literature describing this topic is limited. The prevalence of one fracture mode for higher impact energies shows a possible advantage of the cost-effective preforms for the damage tolerant philosophy.



This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. 246243. The beams were cured in Coexpair facilities; their work is gratefully acknowledged. The authors would like to thank Lucie Nováková for preparing the metallographic specimens in the context of the institutional funding provided by the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic.


Kadlec, M., Hron, R. and Grieser, T. (2015), "Damage tolerance of composite T-sections made of cost-effective carbon fibre preforms", International Journal of Structural Integrity, Vol. 6 No. 1, pp. 90-106.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles