Publication :


The Influence of Interlaminar Microstructure on Micro-Cracking at Laminate Free Edge

Authors: C.R. Cater, X. Xiao, R.K. Goldberg and X. Gong
Year: 2018
Journal: Composites Part - A: Applied Science and Manufacturing.
Pages: accepted April 2018

In composite laminates, the property mismatch between plies of varying orientations results in stress gradients at their free edges. The free edge effect has been well understood at the laminate and lamina scale. The influence of the microstructure on free edge cracking, however, is less known. This work aims at a qualitative understanding of the effect of microscopic features on initial micro-cracking at the laminate free edge. To this end, a two-scale finite element (FE) modelling approach is developed. It consists of a meso-scale model to capture the laminate stacking sequence and the global stress field under a given loading condition, and a micro-scale model to predict the local constituent level stresses at the free edge. The two models were coupled one-way through a strain localization rule. A procedure to determine the boundary conditions for micro-scale FE models containing a free edge was proposed. The two-scale model was used to examine the 90/90 interface in [25N/-25N/90N]S composite laminates. The effects of thermal and tensile loading were investigated separately to understand the influence of interlaminar microstructure on micro-scale stresses at laminate free edges during manufacture and under mechanical loading. The results helped to explain the trend of free edge pre-cracks and progressive damage under tensile load observed in experiments.

Bibtex citation :
Author={Cater, C.R. and Xiao, X. and Goldberg, R.K. and Gong, X.},
Title={The Influence of Interlaminar Microstructure on Micro-Cracking at Laminate Free Edge },
Journal={Composites Part - A: Applied Science and Manufacturing},
Pages={accepted April 2018},

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