NASA STTR 2020-I Solicitation

Proposal Summary

 20-1- T12.01-5412
 Thin-Ply Composite Technology and Applications
 Modeling Nonlinear Viscoelasticity and Time-Dependent Yielding of Thin-Ply Composites
5413 Crus Corvi Road
West Jordan UT  84081 - 5213
Phone: (801) 599-5879
University of Central Florida
12201 Research Parkway, Suite 501
FL  32826 - 3246
Phone: (407) 823-3031

Principal Investigator (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)

Dr. Liang Zhang
2550 Yeager Road, Apt. 11-3 West Lafayette, IN 47906 - 4020
(979) 618-6481

Business Official (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)

Allan Wood
5413 Crus Corvi Rd West Jordan, UT 84081 - 5213
(801) 599-5879
Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) :
Begin: 3
End: 4
Technical Abstract (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)

This project aims at developing a modeling framework capable of accurately predicting the nonlinear viscoelastic and time-dependent yield behavior of thin-ply composite laminates for the reliable design of deployable spacecraft structures. For applications in deployable spacecraft structures, thin-ply composites are currently made from spread-tow carbon fabrics impregnated with epoxy polymer matrices. The polymer matrix exhibits a strongly time-dependent mechanical response, which means that its current stress or strain state is influenced by the loading and temperature histories. Polymers go through several distinct regimes of behavior as the strain level increases, which are characterized by linear viscoelasticity, nonlinear viscoelasticity, time-dependent yielding, viscoplasticity, and time-dependent fracture. A complete constitutive description of all these deformation stages, and incorporation of these behaviors in thin-ply composite laminates, is highly challenging and requires a multi-year effort, but is critical because composite deployable structures are folded to high curvatures for extended periods of time. Previous experiments have shown that an extended stowage time can lead to incomplete deployment, like in the case of the MARSIS instrument in the Mars Express Orbiter mission, and partially recovered deployed shape, resulting in low performance and reliability. 

The proposed effort is a step towards meeting this challenge by focusing on modeling the nonlinear viscoelastic response that precedes permanent deformation as well as the time-dependent yield limits of thin-ply composites. The underlying computational framework is based on the mechanics of structure genome (MSG) [ref msg paper], a recently discovered unified approach for multiscale constitutive modeling of composite structures, and formulated with finite kinematic measures. The material constitutive models are physics-based and informed by appropriate experiments.

Potential NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
  • Deployable composite booms, foldable panels, hinges, reflectors; lightweight structures for satellite buses, landers, rovers, solar arrays, and antennas.
  • Pressurized structures such as deep-space habitation/tanks and lightweight structural components for space exploration systems.
  • Highly flexible wings for future aircraft and highly fatigue and damage tolerant structures for revolutionary vertical lift aircraft.
Potential Non-NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)

Commercial aerospace, defense, auto, marine, energy, recreation:

  • Lightweight/pressurized structures, booms, highly flexible wings, vertical lift structures, fishing rods, golf clubs, skis, industrial tubes, etc.
  • Cost/time reductions and validated tools for industry realization of HS-TPCs
  • Better engineering of broader composite lightweight structures
Duration: 13

Form Generated on 06/29/2020 21:15:14