Mechanical & Materials Engineering, Department of


Date of this Version



Published in Composites Part B 134 (2018), pp 9–17. doi 10.1016/j.compositesb.2017.09.042


Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. Used by permission.


To maximize the controllable energy absorption of corrugation troughs as observed in the single sided corrugated (SSC) tube, we proposed and tested a new structure design, i.e., double-sided corrugated (DSC) tube made of Al 6060-T6 aluminum alloy or CF1263 carbon/epoxy composite. Finite element models were developed to test the mechanical advantage of the DSC tube in comparison with both SSC and classical straight (S) tubes under axial crushing. Results have shown that the total absorbed energy of the DSC aluminum tube with 14 corrugations was 330% and 32% higher than that of the SSC tube with 14 corrugations and the S-tube, respectively. The initiation and progression of the crushing process for different tube configurations were characterized, leading to the mechanism of energy absorption. Plastic deformation in terms of PPEQ is the key parameter correlating with the energy absorption capacity. To overcome the lower specific absorbed energy (SAE) in the DSC tube compared to that in the S-tube, the CF1263 carbon/epoxy composite laminate was adopted and the corresponding SAE was 5.9 times higher than that of the aluminum one. Moreover, the influence of the number of corrugations on the crushing behaviors of the DSC tube was also inspected. A minimal straight tube section was suggested for a controllable smooth crushing behavior regardless of its advantage in SAE. This work might shed light on designing future thin-walled energy absorber devices with better control of crushing behaviors for minimal injuries and damages.