The fracture resistance of fibre composites can be greatly enhanced by crack bridging. In situ observations of mixed mode crack growth in a unidirectional carbon-fibre/epoxy composite reveal crack bridging by single fibres and by beam-like ligaments consisting of several fibres. Based on the observed bridging mechanism, a micromechanical model is developed for the prediction of macroscopic mixed mode bridging laws (stress-opening laws). The model predicts a high normal stress for very small openings, decreasing rapidly with increasing normal and tangential crack opening displacements. In contrast, the shear stress increases rapidly, approaching a constant value with increasing normal and tangential openings. The solutions for the bridging laws and the resulting toughening due to the bridging stresses are obtained in closed analytical form.
|Journal||Mechanics of Materials|
|Publication status||Published - 2008|
- Fracture resistance
- ESEM testing
- Polymer–matrix composites
- Potential function