Numerical Simulation of Thermal Induced Crack Propagation in Laminated Composites


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A coupled thermo-mechanical model is employed to analyze the thermo-mechanical behavior of a widely used laminated composite subject to temperature decrease at service conditions. Three sets of governing equations, i.e. heat transfer, thermo-mechanical deformation and damage evolution are respectively described in the model. These equations are then assembled into a coupled matrix equation using finite element formulation and then solved simultaneously at each time interval. A numerical model of two layered composites with some preexisting equal-spacing cracks along the interface in the lower layer is set up to investigate the thermal induced crack propagation due to temperature decrease. Results are presented in the form of crack propagation process in stress profiles and discussed. Numerical simulations show that the crack propagation behavior of the composites is closely dependent on the physico-mechanical properties of two layers and preexisting cracks. It is found that thermal induced cracks penetrate into the upper layer and grow in the upper layer due to the low strength of the upper layer when the model is subject to uniform temperature decrease.



Materials Science Forum (Volumes 575-578)

Edited by:

Jitai NIU, Zuyan LIU, Cheng JIN and Guangtao Zhou




T. Xu et al., "Numerical Simulation of Thermal Induced Crack Propagation in Laminated Composites", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 575-578, pp. 886-891, 2008

Online since:

April 2008