Safe Technology Ltd. (Sheffield, U.K.) says the latest release of Safe’s fe-safe/Composites (the add-on module to Safe’s fe-safe suite of fatigue analysis software for finite element models) features a new tool for fatigue analysis of woven fibers. Developed by Safe Technology and Firehole Composites (Laramie, Wyo., now part of Autodesk Inc., San Rafael, Calif.), the module also extends current capabilities to new microstructures and loading definitions, and it supports fatigue life predictions of plain-weave microstructures, using the same physics-based solution as that already applied to unidirectional composites. Fatigue life predictions now can be completed for multiaxial load states for which the material is not characterized. Further, the applicable loading definitions have been expanded to allow for multiple repeats and block loadings — useful for defining complex duty cycles (a function used widely by wind turbine blade manufacturers). Finally, the effects of material healing at low stress levels have been included to accommodate infinite life scenarios that are often encountered in analyses with low loads applied for long histories.
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The project’s goal is to reduce product development and certification timelines by 30 percent for composite aircraft.