Experimental Study of Impact Phenomena in the case of a Composite Glider


  • Lukasz Lindstedt Warsaw University of Technology
  • Miroslaw Rodzewicz Warsaw University of Technology
  • Cezary Rzymkowski Warsaw University of Technology
  • Krzysztof Kedzior Warsaw University of Technology


Structures, Materials, Design


The subject of the study was a glider made of composites and subjected to high loads typical of glider crashes.  The aim was to provide experimental data for validation of a numerical model of the cockpit-pilot system during impact.  Two experimental tests with the composite glider cockpit were performed (for practical reasons and for these tests, a typical car-crash track was used with limited space and wings and tail were substituted by properly adjusted weights fixed onto the cockpit).  During the first test the cockpit with a dummy inside was crashed onto the ground at an angle of 45 degrees with a speed of 55km/h.  Accelerations and deformations at chosen points on the cockpit as well as signals coming from dummy sensors and forces in seat belts were recorded.  Examination of the cockpit performed after the test (with an ultrasonic method) did not indicate any significant damage to the structure.  The second test was much more severe.  It was an impact into a rigid wall with a speed about 80 km/h.  This time the cockpit was heavily damaged.  The full-scale tests were accompanied by a number of quasi-static and dynamic laboratory tests with samples of the composite material.  The experimental tests provided valuable results for parametrical identification of a simulation model developed using the MADYMO software.