Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Civil and Environmental Engineering

First Advisor

Ting Tan


Helicoidal fiber structures are essential to shell structures of many animals, such arthropods and human bones. Despite prior studies, limited research exists to quantify the mechanical behavior of helicoidal fiber structures with respect to the architecture of the fibers and matrices. The objective of this research is to use an integrated experimental and modeling approach to study the mechanical performance of helicoidal fiber structures under compressive and shear loadings. First, bioinspired helicoidal fiber specimens are created using 3D printed fiber cores and epoxy matrices. Load-displacement curves are collected for the helicoidal fiber specimens under monotonic torsional and compressive loadings to illustrate the composite failure process. Then, microscopic characterization is performed to reveal the fracture mechanisms in helicoidal fiber structures under normal and shear stresses. Finally, finite element analysis is performed to detail the mechanical response of the composites with respect to different design parameters to optimize material design. This bio-inspired study provides insights to the mechanical behavior of helicoidal fiber structures and potential hints for the development of high performance fiber-reinforced composites.



Number of Pages

111 p.