Through the use of general instability theory for doubly curved orthotropic shells, a mathematical relation was developed to predict external pressure buckling of stiffened prolate spheroids. The procedure was applied to two experiments which were found to be in fair agreement with theory. In general, the method is applicable to doubly curved shells with orthotropic material properties (composites) as well as geometric orthotropicity, and subject to arbitrary membrane stress fields. It is not limited to pressure alone. Furthermore, because of the closed form of the solutions to many problems, the procedure would be particularly useful for optimization purposes.

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