Shape optimisation of composite corrugated morphing skins

Anna Ermakova, Iman Dayyani

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    36 Citations (Scopus)


    One of the challenging parts of the morphing wing is the anisotropic skin, which must be flexible enough to allow the wing to change its shape and at the same time being stiff enough to withstand the aerodynamic loads. Composite corrugated skins have exceedingly anisotropic behaviour as they are stiff along the corrugation direction but flexible in transverse direction. Hence, elastomeric coated composite corrugated panels have been proposed as a candidate for application in morphing wings. This paper presents the shape optimisation of the corrugation with respect to better performance of the morphing skin and manufacturing constraints. The shape of the skin is optimised by minimising the in-plane stiffness and weight of the skin and maximising its flexural out-of-plane stiffness. The objective functions were obtained from homogenised model that depends on geometric and mechanical properties of the coated corrugated panel by means of finite element method for thin beams. A few methods of optimisation were considered: aggregated and genetic algorithm methods as representative of two major categories of multi-objective solving methods. A number of different approaches are proposed in order to solve the problem, such as corrugated skin with and without elastomer coating. The advantages of the new optimised shape of the corrugated skin over the typical shapes are discussed.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)87-101
    JournalComposites Part B: Engineering
    Early online date15 Oct 2016
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Apr 2017


    • Anisotropy
    • Elasticity
    • Computational modelling
    • Finite element analysis (FEA)


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