Modeling of dynamic mode I crack growth in glass fiber-reinforced polymer composites: fracture energy and failure mechanism

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Abstract

The mode-I dynamic fracture energy and failure mechanisms of glass fiber-reinforced polymer composites are investigated with an embedded cell model of the single-edge-notched-tension (SENT) geometry. Under an applied dynamic loading, a crack may propagate in the embedded microstructure, accompanied by the development of a fracture process zone in which fiber/matrix debonding, matrix cracking and ductile matrix tearing are observed. Reaching a maximum nominal strain rate of 250/s, a series of SENT tests are performed for different loading velocities and specimen sizes while the dynamic energy release rate is evaluated using the dynamic version of the J-integral. The influence and interaction of loading rate, time-dependent material nonlinearity, structural inertia and matrix ligament bridging on the fracture toughness and failure mechanisms of composites are evaluated. It is found that with the given material parameters and studied loading rate range, the failure type is brittle with many microcracks but limited plasticity in the fracture process zone and a trend of increasing brittleness for larger strain rates is observed. The inertia effect is evident for larger strain rates but it is not dominating. An R-curve in the average sense is found to be strain-rate independent before the fracture process zone is fully developed and afterwards a velocity–toughness mechanism is dictating the crack growth.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107522
Number of pages23
JournalEngineering Fracture Mechanics
Volume243
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Composites
  • Dynamic crack propagation
  • Embedded cell
  • Fracture energy

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