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Simplified Integrative Simulation of Short Fibre Reinforced Polymers under Varying Thermal Conditions

The use of injection moulded, short fibre reinforced structural parts in vehicle design is increasing due to their low density and outstanding mechanical properties. As the distribution and orientation of fibres within the components are heavily dependent on the moulding process, product devel-opers do well to take process simulations into consideration before performing anisotropic struc-tural analyses. To enable the use of these integrative simulations within early design stages, a simplified approach has been developed by SCHÖPFER and extended by GRUBER/WARTZACK. It considers the material's anisotropy by using the fibre orientation data gained from the injection moulding simulation. By reducing the complexity of the orientation con-dition and the material representation, a simulation approach suitable for early design stages was created. However, within the so-called IS4ED approach by GRUBER the influence of high or low tempera-tures on the material behaviour is not considered. As the thermoplastic materials are sensitive to even minor changes in temperature, the IS4ED approach has to be enhanced. The decrease of stiffness and maximum stress levels and the increase of maximum strain at elevated tempera-tures have to be added to the approach. Nevertheless, the reduced complexity and suitability for early design steps, which are the main advantages, shall remain untouched. The material behav-iour within the enhanced IS4ED approach will still be modelled by overlapping different material descriptions. In addition to the layers covering the anisotropic and strain-rate dependent behav-iour, the definition of new layers to describe temperature dependency will be introduced in this paper. This will enable to predict the structural behaviour in a wide temperature range.