Department of Mechanical Engineering, Military Institute of Science and Technology,
Impact resistance is a critical characteristic of the protective exoskeletal armours found in a wide variety of organisms. Crustaceans exhibit some of the most protective exoskeletons and it is understood that much of this is a consequence of the orientation and layup of the fibre-reinforcements within the structures of the exoskeletons. The fibres assume a helicoidal form (Bouligand structure), which is highly effective at dissipating impact energy, thereby protecting the soft body of the animal beneath. Mechanical tests on certain Bouligand structured materials, such as the stomatopod dactyl club, has further shown that the mechanical properties can be very high. There are but a few studies attempting to apply “Bouligand technology” to FRP composites, yet enhancing our understanding of Bouligand architected FRPs will very likely improve hypotheses relating to how we should structure composites to optimise properties such as impact resistance, combined strength/stretch properties, and torsional resistance. This proposal aims to use computational methods with experimental tests in parallel, to design Bouligand structured FRP composites.