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In this work the low-velocity impact response of composite sandwich beams was studied by an analytical model. A dimensional analysis was carried out in order to identify the key parameters that influence the dynamic beam response, and to assess the effect of the dimensionless groups on the contact force and contact time. Low-velocity impact tests were conducted to validate the theoretical model. The predicted results were in good agreement with experimental data in terms of maximum contact force, contact time, and contact force time curves. It was shown that the groups with more influence on maximum contact force and contact time are the dimensionless global stiffness, the dimensionless local stiffness, and the dimensionless impact velocity. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.