Prediction of the uncertainty in the response of lightweight structures consisting of solid foams
The present study is concerned with an integrated computational scheme for prediction of the uncertainties in the structural response of sandwich structures with metal foam core, resulting from the disorder in the random foam microstructure. For this purpose, a stochastic homogenization scheme is utilized for determination of the effective elastic properties of the foam core, considering the individual cells of the microstructure as testing volume elements to which the homogenization equations are applied. The advantage of this scheme is that both, the scatter to be expected in the effective material properties as well as the spatial correlation of the varying effective properties are addressed. Based on the results, a random field formulation for the effective material of the core layer is employed to assess the uncertainty in the macroscopic structural response of a sandwich beam. It is observed that significant effects of the disordered microstructure are to be expected especially in the strength and structural integrity assessment.