Design and Analysis of a Composite Tailcone for the XM 1002 Training Round

Report No. ARL-TR-4428
Authors: James M. Sands; James Garner; Peter Dehmer; Uday Vaidya; Adolfo Villalobos; Juan Serrano; George Husman; Robert Brannon
Date/Pages: April 2008; 84 pages
Abstract: A long-fiber thermoplastic (LFT) composite XM-1002 tailcone has been designed and fabricated to explore the technical feasibility of substituting aluminum-machined tailcones with low-cost, fiber-reinforced polymer tailcones. The design phase of the project involved developing a material model and numerically evaluating the stresses on the projectile using a simulated launch environment. A detailed ANSYS-based finite element analysis (FEA) was undertaken to investigate the behavior of the LFT tailcone compared to the existing aluminum version for various fiber loading. In the analysis, the tailcone was subjected to a variety of mechanical- and thermal-loading conditions. This report summarizes the detailed design and FEA of two versions of the XM-1002 composite tailcone. These are referred to as hollow-back and filled-back. For the hollow-back geometry, the objective was to mimic the external geometry of the presently used aluminum tailcone. The hollow-back tailcone was further investigated for two metal insert geometries, beaded and threaded. Weight reduction with respect to the all-metal (aluminum) version of the tailcone is not desirable; hence a metal insert was used in conjunction with the LFT material. Three conditions with respect to the firing of a projectile have also been discussedin-bore, transition, and out-of-bore. The response of the LFT composite tailcone to pressure, gravitational load, and temperature has been evaluated. The testing trial held at Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, demonstrated that the LFT filled-back glass/nylon tailcone with 40% glass loading successfully passed the firing conditions. By implementing the proposed LFT composite tailcone, significant cost savings are projected compared to the existing aluminum version.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: April 1, 2008