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33. Mechanical Behavior of Ultra-light Bio-Inspired Nanocomposite Structures



The inner part of bones is spongy cell-type three dimensional structure called cancellous bone which is the major contributor in keeping the bone weight very low. Yet, bone can sustain body weight and reasonable impact loads implying bone is a naturally optimized lightweight but strong structure.This study demonstrates a novel approach to manufacture bonelike nanocomposite structure for weight saving structural applications. For this, Silicon Carbide (SiC) nano particles are dispersed in SC-15 epoxy resin (a two part liquid resin that solidifies when mixed together at room temperature). Using our novel 3D+ manufacturing technique we developed lighter but stronger nanocomposite structure. The compression test results showed an improvement in the strength and stiffness of epoxy polymer when a small percentage of SiC nano particles are dispersed in pure epoxy matrix. Using the same manufacturing process, new types of sandwich structures with polyurethane foam core were manufactured and bending tests showed higher stiffness with addition of polyurethane foam to regular honeycombed sandwich structure.

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