Softwaretool ESSBe (Easy Sandwich Structure Calculator)

Due to the high potential for lightweight construction, sandwich construction is becoming increasingly important in many technical sectors. Typical areas of application include vehicle construction, energy technology and building construction. The targeted combination of foam and fibre composite materials for the core and cover layers of the sandwich offers multiple possibilities for weight savings.

Within the framework of the ESSBe project (Easy Sandwich Structure Calculator), a compact and user-friendly software tool for the mechanical design of sandwich structures was therefore developed. The basis for this is the finite element programme Z88Aurora®, which was developed at the Chair of Engineering Design and CAD at the University of Bayreuth. The graphical user interface provides the option of automated model generation for standardised sandwich models. The mechanical analysis of the finite element models generated in this way is carried out by the calculation kernel, which was developed as part of the project. The project was supported by the European Fund for Regional Development in Bavaria, which covered 50 % of the development costs.

The result is a stress and deformation based failure assessment of the simulated sandwich component under load by 3-point and 4-point bending tests. Individual materials can be selected for the sandwich structure, from polyester resins to epoxy resins reinforced with glass mats, roving fabrics or scrims to foam cores made of EPS, PVC, PU, PP.

Through the ongoing intensive exchange between the University of Bayreuth and the project participants, it was possible to develop a software solution specifically tailored to the practical design process. The final version of the freeware software represents a friendly, automated tool to support the development of sandwich lightweight structures. If you are interested in the software, please feel free to contact us or the University of Bayreuth.

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