Document Type



Master of Science


Mechanical Engineering

First Adviser

Grenestedt, Joachim L.


The ongoing suspension boat project at Lehigh University Composites Lab presents new challenges for design since a suspension boat will encounter entirely different loads than a conventional boat. High strength yet low weight are as always of major importance.The suspension boat presently under consideration consists of four sponsons connected to a center hull, or fuselage. An FEA study of the composite fuselage was conducted. Crash loads were applied as evenly distributed pressures over parts of the top of the cockpit. Suspension loads were applied at discrete points on the fuselage, where the suspension components will be mounted, and inertia relief calculations were performed. Masses representing occupants, engine etc were included in the model. The fuselage is built of carbon fiber reinforced epoxy skins on foam core sandwich. Different carbon fiber ply layups and foam core thicknesses were studied. A satisfactory layup scheme was achieved for the fuselage.