The effects of shape memory alloy thin films embedded in composite plates for improving damage resistance of composite structures under low velocity impact were investigated numerically. Analysis model for SMA thin film was developed based on Lagoudas' model and implemented using the user defined material subroutine of the ABAQUS/Explicit finite element program. Composite damage model based on the Chang-Chang failure criteria was also implemented to consider progressive damage behavior. The finite element simulation of low velocity impact behavior of a shape memory alloy hybrid composite plate was performed using the ABAQUS/Explicit program. Parametric studies were performed to investigate the effect of shape memory alloys for improving damage resistance of composite plate. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.