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Elastomeric Microlattice Impact Attenuators

23 Pages Posted: 30 Jul 2019 Sneak Peek Status: Published

See all articles by Eric C. Clough

Eric C. Clough

HRL Laboratories LLC

Thomas A. Plaisted

Government of the United States of America - Weapons and Materials Research Directorate

Zak C. Eckel

HRL Laboratories LLC

Kenneth Cante

HRL Laboratories LLC

Jacob M. Hundley

HRL Laboratories LLC

Tobias A. Schaedler

HRL Laboratories LLC

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Abstract

Impact attenuating materials fulfill an essential role in applications as diverse as protective packaging, shock isolators for electronics, vehicle interiors, and helmet padding. These materials are typically cellular in construction, and are designed to absorb impact energy through the collapse of pores within the material below a threshold force (or acceleration), thereby mitigating damage or injury. Polymer foams are the most common impact attenuating materials, and see widespread use in many industries. Recent advances in additive manufacturing techniques have enabled the fabrication of cellular materials with architected lattice topology. Here it is demonstrated that via design of cellular architecture the dynamic stress-strain response can be tailored, resulting in elastomeric lattices with impact attenuation performance significantly exceeding that of state-of-the-art foams for both single and multi-impact scenarios. Then, the additional degrees of freedom in the design of the cellular architecture of lattice based impact attenuators are leveraged to optimize their performance for a typical helmet impact scenario whereby the contact area increases during deformation. An improvement over state-of-the-art vinyl nitrile foam helmet pads is achieved during a standard helmet test leading to lower head acceleration. This breakthrough could pave the way to helmets with improved injury protection.

Keywords: Cellular Materials, Microlattice, Impact Absorber

Suggested Citation

Clough, Eric C. and Plaisted, Thomas A. and Eckel, Zak C. and Cante, Kenneth and Hundley, Jacob M. and Schaedler, Tobias A., Elastomeric Microlattice Impact Attenuators (July 27, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3427465 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3427465
This is a paper under consideration at Cell Press and has not been peer-reviewed.

Eric C. Clough

HRL Laboratories LLC

Malibu, CA 90265
United States

Thomas A. Plaisted

Government of the United States of America - Weapons and Materials Research Directorate

Aberdeen, MD 21005
United States

Zak C. Eckel

HRL Laboratories LLC

Malibu, CA 90265
United States

Kenneth Cante

HRL Laboratories LLC

Malibu, CA 90265
United States

Jacob M. Hundley

HRL Laboratories LLC

Malibu, CA 90265
United States

Tobias A. Schaedler (Contact Author)

HRL Laboratories LLC ( email )

Malibu, CA 90265
United States

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