Simulation and Experimental Validation of Spacer Fabrics Based on their Structure and Yarn's Properties
Warp-knitted spacer fabrics are considered, which are plates or shells composed of two knitted plane layers connected by vertical beams. Our aim is to compute the effective stiffness and permeability of such spacer fabrics on the basis of their structure and properties of yarns and the monofil. In order to reduce the computational effort and simplify the computational model, homogenization and dimension reduction techniques are applied. They replace the fabric by an equivalent two-dimensional plate or shell with effective elastic properties. To compute the effective permeability, the fluid simulation is done on the fully resolved micro-structure. The paper demonstrates the algorithm on application examples. We compute the elastic properties of a spacer fabric and its effective permeability for different outer-plane compression stages. Numerical examples were performed by applying the multi-scale simulation tools, developed at Fraunhofer ITWM and by comparing with the corresponding experimental results, based on measurements performed at the TU Dresden. The developed algorithms and simulation tools enable a full virtualisation of the material design adapted to exposure scenarios in various technical application cases, i.e. infiltration processes with polymers in the field of fiber reinforced composites, which enables new discoveries for the designing and manufacturing process of 3D warp-knitted spacer fabrics.