In this paper, amethod to obtain effective continuum beamstiffness properties of tensegrity towers withn struts in each bay is developed.Long tensegrity towers for space applications canbemodeled as beam-like structures, andaxial, bending, shear, and torsional stiffness properties can be used tomake comparisons between alternatives to determine the optimum design for a mission. Continuum beam models and effective stiffness properties of Class-2 tensegrity towers are obtained using a modified energy equivalency approach. Self-stress levels (i.e., cable tension and strut compression) are varied to observe their influence on the effective stiffness properties. Axial and torsional rigidities are found to be highly affected by the self-stress level, while bending and shear rigidities are not affected as much. The obtained effective stiffness properties are validated with nonlinear finite element analyses. With these properties, alternative tower designs for a specific application can be readily evaluated without the need for numerous computationally expensive structural analyses.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Aerospace Engineering