Research Papers

The Effect of Honeycomb Core Geometry on the Sound Transmission Performance of Sandwich Panels

[+] Author and Article Information
David Griese, Lonny Thompson

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Clemson University,
Clemson, SC 29634-0921

Joshua D. Summers

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Clemson University,
Clemson, SC 29634-0921
e-mail: jsummer@clemson.edu

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Noise Control and Acoustics Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF VIBRATION AND ACOUSTICS. Manuscript received April 30, 2012; final manuscript received October 24, 2014; published online January 20, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Liang-Wu Cai.

J. Vib. Acoust 137(2), 021011 (Apr 01, 2015) (11 pages) Paper No: VIB-12-1135; doi: 10.1115/1.4029043 History: Received April 30, 2012; Revised October 24, 2014; Online January 20, 2015

The authors present numerical results for a systematic parametric study of the effect of honeycomb core geometry on the sound transmission and vibration properties of in-plane loaded honeycomb core sandwich panels using structural acoustic finite element analysis (FEA). Honeycomb cellular structures offer many distinct advantages over homogenous materials because their effective material properties depend on both their constituent material properties and their geometric cell configuration. From these structures, a wide range of targeted effective material properties can be achieved thus supporting forward design-by-tailoring honeycomb cellular structures for specific applications. One area that has not been fully explored is the set of acoustic properties of honeycomb and understanding of how designers can effectively tune designs in different frequency ranges. One such example is the insulation of target sound frequencies to prevent sound transmission through a panel. This work explored the effect of geometry of in-plane honeycomb cores in sandwich panels on the acoustic properties the panel. The two acoustic responses of interest are the general level of sound transmission loss (STL) of the panel and the location of the resonance frequencies that exhibit high levels of sound transmission, or low sound pressure transmission loss. Constant mass honeycomb core models were studied with internal cell angles ranging in increments from −45 deg to +45 deg. Effective honeycomb moduli based on static analysis of honeycomb unit cells are calculated and correlated to the shift in resonance frequencies for the different geometries, with all panels having the same total mass. This helps explain the direction of resonance frequency shift found in the panel natural frequency solutions. Results show an interesting trend of the first resonance frequencies in relation to effective structural properties. Honeycomb geometries with smaller core internal cell angles, under constant mass constraints, shifted natural frequencies lower, and had more resonances in the 1–1000 Hz range, but exhibited a higher sound pressure transmission loss between resonant frequencies.

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Fig. 1

Schematic of frequency dependent sound transmission regions of a finite panel showing regions controlled by stiffness, resonance, mass, and coincidence (adapted from Refs. [8,29])

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Fig. 2

Sandwich panels with standard and auxetic cores and unit cell parameters

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Fig. 3

Local geometric unit cell sizing parameters

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Fig. 4

Representative honeycomb core models, each with a total length of 2 m

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Fig. 5

Model setup diagram with loading conditions

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Fig. 6

Mesh of the air domain showing bias towards edge in contact with the sandwich panel

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Fig. 7

First natural frequency compared with effective shear modulus

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Fig. 8

First natural frequency compared with effective Young's modulus (x-direction)

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Fig. 9

First natural frequency compared with Young's modulus (y-direction)

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Fig. 10

Sound pressure transmission loss of panels with positive angle cores at 15, 30, and 45 deg cell angles

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Fig. 11

Sound pressure transmission loss of panels with negative angle cores at −15, −30, and −45 deg cell angles

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Fig. 12

Varying spacing between dips in the sound pressure transmission loss curve

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Fig. 13

Comparison for 1×40 and 2×80 models in the +30 deg configuration

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Fig. 14

Comparison for the 1×40 and 2×80 models in the 30 deg configuration




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