Modelling the Effect of Microstructural Randomness on the Fracture of Composite Laminates with Stochastic Cohesive Zone Elements
Fibre reinforced polymer composites (FRPCs) are being increasingly used in structural applications where high specific strength and stiffness are required. The performance of FRPCs is affected by multi-mechanism damage evolution under loading which in turn is affected by microstructural stochasticity in the material. This means that the fracture of a FRPC is a stochastic process. However, to date most analyses of these materials have treated them in a deterministic way. In this paper the effect of stochasticity in FRPCs is investigated through the application of cohesive zone elements in which random properties are introduced. These may be termed ‘stochastic cohesive zone elements’ and are used in this paper to investigate the effect of microstructural randomness on the fracture behaviour of cross-ply laminate specimens loaded in tension. It is seen from this investigation that microstructure can significantly affect the macroscopic response of FRPC’s, emphasizing the need to account for microstructural randomness in order to make accurate prediction of the performance of laminated composite structures.
M.H Aliabadi, S. Abela, S. Baragetti, M. Guagliano and Han-Seung Lee
Z. R. Khokhar et al., "Modelling the Effect of Microstructural Randomness on the Fracture of Composite Laminates with Stochastic Cohesive Zone Elements", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 417-418, pp. 13-16, 2010