Elastic buckling of hexagonal chiral cell honeycombs

FL Scarpa, S Blain, T Lew, D Perrott, M Ruzzene, JR Yates

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

195 Citations (Scopus)


The paper describes a combined analytical, numerical and experimental analysis on the compressive strength of hexagonal chiral honeycombs due to elastic buckling of the unit cells under flatwise compressive loading. Hexagonal chiral honeycombs are cellular structures composed noncentresymmetric unit cells, with an in-plane negative Poisson’s ratio (NPR) with a value of −1. Cylinders connected by tangent ligaments at 60° degrees compose the unit cells. Approximated analytical models are proposed for the purpose of initial design assuming the main contribution to the elastic collapse stress being given by the nodes, and considering also the superposition of the critical elastic loads of each component of the unit cell. The models are expressed in terms of nondimensional geometric unit cell parameters (ligament to cylinder radius aspect ratio and relative density), and core material properties. Finite element calculations using shell and brick elements are also performed on unit cell models with periodic boundary conditions using linear bifurcation buckling analysis. The analytical and numerical results are compared with the outcome of a series of experimental flatwise compressive tests carried out on chiral honeycomb samples manufactured using rapid prototyping technique in PA sintered powder and ABS plastics. The comparison shows good convergence between the sets of results, and highlights the specific deformation mechanisms of the hexagonal chiral honeycomb cell.
Translated title of the contributionElastic buckling of hexagonal chiral cell honeycombs
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280 - 289
Number of pages10
JournalComposites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2007

Bibliographical note

Publisher: Elsevier


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