Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Mechanical, Automotive, and Materials Engineering

First Advisor

Altenhof, W.


Engineering, Mechanical.




The research completed for this thesis is focused on the energy absorption capabilities of axially loaded structures fabricated from aluminum alloy extruded tubing with a square cross section. Quasi-static compressive testing is used to examine the effects of different sizes of dual centrally-located circular hole discontinuities on the crush characteristics of the extrusion absorber test specimens. Test specimens fabricated from three types of aluminum alloy extrusion stock material, AA6061-T4, AA6061-T6, and AA6063-T5, and two wall thicknesses were considered in the crush testing. Finite element models of each of the test specimens were developed using a material model incorporating damage mechanics. The material models were developed using a two-stage calibration process employing data from tensile tests conducted on specimens extracted from the extrusion stock material. The results of the quasi-static compressive testing showed that large improvements in energy absorption characteristics may be achieved in the types of axially-loaded structures considered in this research through the addition of circular hole discontinuities. Several new collapse modes were observed in the experimental crush testing and are characterized in the text using photographs of the experimental process. The collapse modes and energy absorption of the crush test specimens were found to be dependent largely on material properties. Furthermore, a good correlation was observed between the results of the experimental quasi-static compressive tests and the results of the finite element simulations. An equation was developed that predicts the axial load corresponding to the initiation of plasticity at the boundary of the circular hole discontinuity of the structures considered in this research with good accuracy.Dept. of Mechanical, Automotive, and Materials Engineering. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis2003 .A76. Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 43-01, page: 0299. Adviser: William Altenhof. Thesis (M.A.Sc.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 2004.