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Coordination Action on Advanced Sandwich Structures in the Transportation Industry

SAND.CORe aims to foster the application of innovative sandwich structures in European transport systems, particularly in the maritime and rail sectors. This will be done by:

Tags: Multimodal
  • collecting available information with regard to metallic, hybrid and composite lightweight structures
  • conducting benchmark studies for dedicated application cases defined by the end users
  • identifying knowledge gaps and research needs
  • elaborating a best practice guide for sandwich design, manufacturing, assembly, approval and application.

These results will be made available through the project website (, public dissemination events and a dedicated user group.


Various R&D projects aiming to develop sandwich structures have been carried out in several sectors at European, national and company levels. These projects have produced results but they are difficult for industrial users to access and compare. SANDCORe aims to collect and compare available solutions, benchmark possible sandwich solutions for concrete application cases in the rail and maritime fields, and produce a best practice guideline for potential end users. Along with a number of public workshops, this will improve the application of results from previous projects.

In general, sandwich panels offer a number of advantages for transport systems, such as being lightweight (increased payload), having a reduced space consumption, structural safety and reduced assembly cost.


The scientific-technical objectives of SAND.CORe are:

  • producing a collection of current knowledge on sandwich structures related to applications, design methods, test procedures, production, rules and regulations
  • creating a sandwich solutions and data catalogue
  • performing benchmark studies and comparisons of different sandwich panels in possible sandwich applications, focusing on RoRo decks, superstructures, balconies (maritime) as well as a rail vehicle cab
  • elaborating a best practice guideline on sandwich design, production, repair and maintenance, rules and legislations as well as applications
  • generating new RTD ideas to further develop the composite sandwich technology
  • promoting knowledge and application transfer within the related sectors and beyond.
January 2004
January 2004

Description of work

The work plan of the Coordination Action comprises the following steps:

WP1: Analysis of the current state of technology in sandwich applications, design, production and in related rules and legislation using information from the partners’ previous work as well as public domain information.

WP2: Structuring the available information, for example in a sandwich selection tree for potential users as well as on the project website.

WP3: Benchmark studies by applying available best practice knowledge and solutions in concrete cases defined by the industrial partners.

WP4: Elaboration of a best practice guideline for potential external users comprising available information and recommended practices.

WP5: Networking activities, such as public workshops, and the establishment of an external user group for the exchange of information and discussions with external parties.


The project results include:

  • a list and abstracts of public domain information on sandwich design, production and application as well as test results accessible through the project website and contact through the coordinator
  • a best practice guide focused in particular on the maritime industry, which will be available on the project website and can also be obtained as a CD-ROM from the coordinator
  • a directory and links to suppliers and users of sandwich panels are available on the website
  • concrete design solutions for five application cases defined by the end users in the project, which will be available to project partners and user group members.

The project finished in June 2006. Please contact the coordinator for further information.