Aluminium composite panel with a thin walled honeycomb core is used as a structure for light transport systems and for building of indoor and outdoor constructions.
Their main advantage is small mass and high rigidity, which is the main reason for their usage. Composite panel is composed of two aluminium sheets, which are glued on to the honeycomb core.
These panels can be drilled, cut, pressed and bent. Usually we just bend panels with thickness below 10 mm. If we try to bend panels with a higher thickness, we risk the deformation of honeycomb structure to such measure that it loses its function. Or in some cases we can even cause its destruction.
Problem with most sheet metal materials is anisotropy. Anisotropy is a phenomenom when a material has different properties in different directions, because of its manufacturing process (rolling). This can also affect the properties of composite panel. We tested the effects of anisotropy by bending multiple samples from two perpendicular directions.
We discovered that the honeycomb core has the most impact on the anisotropy of a panel. When installing aluminium panels it is very important to keep an eye on the direction of mounting because of core design.