Helically Curved Unfurlable Structural Elements: Kinematic Analysis and Laboratory Demonstration

[+] Author and Article Information
G. Greschik, K. C. Park

Department of Aerospace Engineering Sciences and Center for Aerospace Structures, Campus Box 429, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309-0429

M. Natori

The Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS), Yoshinodai, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 229, Japan

J. Mech. Des 118(1), 22-28 (Mar 01, 1996) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2826852 History: Received January 01, 1995; Revised July 01, 1995; Online December 11, 2007


The concept of the unfurling deployment of helically curved tubular members is proposed and its feasibility is confirmed through kinematic analyses and a demonstration model. The challenge of curved geometry—the varying lengths of longitudinal fiber lines across the member’s constituent strip—is answered by a noncylindrical storage drum shaped not to engender membrane strains in the retracted configuration (for a membrane strain-free unfurled state). The overall kinematics and the involved strains are numerically investigated and the feasibility of the deployment process itself is confirmed via a beryllium copper model.

Copyright © 1996 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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