A study of tape spring fold curvature for space deployable structures

Walker, S.J.I. and Aglietti, G.S. (2007) A study of tape spring fold curvature for space deployable structures Journal of Aerospace Engineering, 221, (3), pp. 313-325. (doi:10.1243/09544100JAERO209).


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Tape springs, defined as thin metallic strips with an initially curved cross section, are an attractive structural solution and hinge mechanism for small satellite deployable structures due to their low mass, low cost and general simplicity. They have previously been used to deploy booms and array panels in various configurations that incorporate a two dimensional deployment of the tape. However, applications currently exist that incorporate three dimensional tape springs folds. To accurately model the deployment of an appendage mounted with tape spring hinges, it is necessary to accurately model the opening moments produced from the material strains in the tape spring fold. These moments are primarily a function of curvature. This publication uses a photographic method to analyse the curvature assumptions of two dimensional tape spring folds and to define the curvature trends for three dimensional tape spring folds as a basis for calculating the opening moment. It is found that although a variation in the curvature can be seen for three dimensional tape spring folds, its effect is secondary to the tape thickness tolerance. Therefore constant curvature models are concluded to be accurate enough for general tape fold applications.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1243/09544100JAERO209
ISSNs: 0954-4100 (print)
Keywords: tape spring, curvature, three dimensional fold, deployable structures
Subjects: T Technology > TL Motor vehicles. Aeronautics. Astronautics
Organisations: Aeronautics, Astronautics & Comp. Eng, Faculty of Engineering and the Environment, Astronautics Group
ePrint ID: 39594
Date :
Date Event
June 2007Published
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2006
Last Modified: 16 Apr 2017 21:54
Further Information:Google Scholar
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/39594

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