Exact buckling solutions for composite laminates : Proper free edge conditions under in-plane loadings

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-128
Journal / PublicationActa Mechanica
Publication statusPublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes


This paper considers the elastic buckling of symmetric cross-ply laminated rectangular plates with two parallel edges simply supported, one edge free and the remaining edge free, simply supported or clamped. The first-order shear deformation plate theory is used in the analysis. An error apparently made by previous researchers for boundary conditions at free edges subjected to in-plane loads is corrected. Closed-form buckling factors are obtained using a generalised Levy-type solution method to solve the differential equations which govern the buckling behaviour of the laminates. Comparisons are made with previously published results, and the differences between buckling factors obtained with the appropriate and inappropriate free edge conditions are examined. The variation of buckling factors with plate aspect ratio, thickness ratio and the number of layers is investigated. Sets of first-known buckling solutions for cross-ply laminates are reported in design charts and tables.

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