FEMLAB analysis of open aluminium foam in compression

Nygaard, J.V.
Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center (iNANO) Aarhus University, The Faculty of Science, Ny Munkegade, Aarhus C, Denmark.

The analysis of the mechanical properties of bi-continuous structures has been problematic due to the complex geometry that describes these materials. In this study a method which identifies and quantifies the geometrical elements within the structure will be presented. A sample is in-situ compressed and its deformation is compared with the results of a FEMLAB finite element model.

Initially, the XRMT dataset of the uncompressed foam is image processed. Then, the DipImage Toolbox for MATLAB is applied for three dimensional image processing and a skeleton which describes the topology of the structure is generated.

A combined graph and wireframe model of the structure is obtained. Using the graph model, a script is applied to build a FEMLAB beam model of the structure. From the wireframe model the cross sectional area of each beam element is calculated and included in the FEMLAB script. In FEMLAB the compression of the foam structure is modelled and the results are compared to the XRMT datasets.