Table of Contents
Journal of Computational Engineering
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 521610, 15 pages
Research Article

Computational Modelling of the Structural Integrity following Mass-Loss in Polymeric Charred Cellular Solids

1School of Computing, Engineering and Physical Sciences, University of Central Lancashire, Preston PR1 2HE, UK
2Thornton Science Park, University of Chester, Parkgate Road, Chester, Cheshire CH1 4BJ, UK
3North Composites Engineering Ltd., Unit 6 Rosebridge Court, Rosebridge Way Ince, Wigan WN1 3DP, UK

Received 13 July 2014; Accepted 8 September 2014; Published 27 October 2014

Academic Editor: George Labeas

Copyright © 2014 J. P. M. Whitty et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A novel computational technique is presented for embedding mass-loss due to burning into the ANSYS finite element modelling code. The approaches employ a range of computational modelling methods in order to provide more complete theoretical treatment of thermoelasticity absent from the literature for over six decades. Techniques are employed to evaluate structural integrity (namely, elastic moduli, Poisson’s ratios, and compressive brittle strength) of honeycomb systems known to approximate three-dimensional cellular chars. That is, reducing the mass of diagonal ribs and both diagonal-plus-vertical ribs simultaneously show rapid decreases in the structural integrity of both conventional and reentrant (auxetic, i.e., possessing a negative Poisson’s ratio) honeycombs. On the other hand, reducing only the vertical ribs shows initially modest reductions in such properties, followed by catastrophic failure of the material system. Calculations of thermal stress distributions indicate that in all cases the total stress is reduced in reentrant (auxetic) cellular solids. This indicates that conventional cellular solids are expected to fail before their auxetic counterparts. Furthermore, both analytical and FE modelling predictions of the brittle crush strength of both auxteic and conventional cellular solids show a relationship with structural stiffness.