Joshua Valdivia

Joshua Valdivia

Development of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Vehicle Structures

Authors

Joshua Valdivia, Sean Niemi

Mentor

Sean Niemi

College

Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering

Abstract

Composite laminate structures are becoming increasingly common in the automotive and aerospace structures.  This project modeled and tested composite panels that could be used for future construction of a Formula SAE vehicle. Using MATLAB, scripts were generated to estimate the minimum and maximum stiffnesses of the materials required. With chosen materials, a simulated model was developed, in FEMAP, that predicted the buckling modulus of the structure. Six physical tests were conducted to examine the elements to be used to ensure structural equivalency to a traditional steel spaceframe. Tensile coupon tests were conducted in accordance with ASTM D3039, and inter-laminar bond tests were conducted for suspension mounting. The additional four tests (bolt pull-out, three-point bend, lap joint, and perimeter shear) were conducted to determine the errors in manufacturing ability and compare laminate structures with simulations and manufacturer specifications. Elastic moduli and ultimate tensile strength of the laminates were determined to be within 5% and 10% of the simulated model, respectively.

Poster

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Research Pitch

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