Interlaminar fracture reinforcement under mode-II loading: Post-cure through-thickness reinforcement of graphite epoxy, unidirectional laminates

Joel B Jacobson, Purdue University


A novel through-thickness reinforcement method proposed by S. Kravchenko et al., has been static tested under mode II loading using end notched flexure (ENF), unidirectional laminate specimens to determine the impact on the apparent critical fracture toughness (GIIc) for the material tested. Both experimental and numerical methods have been employed in an attempt to characterize and model these effects. Testing and analysis were conducted on two different specimen thickness, 2.34 mm and 3.54 mm nominally. ASTM D7905/7905M – 14 was followed during the experimental portion of the thick specimens. Multiple reinforcing configurations using the proposed technique were experimentally tested including single, double, and quadruple rows of orthogonal, pultruded carbon/epoxy pins located within the crack and ahead of the crack (pristine material) to determine the effect on the apparent critical fracture toughness for each configuration. Both pre-cracked and no pre-cracked specimens were evaluated. The results of this study indicate that specimens pinned in the crack experienced the highest supportable reaction force such that the crack was completely arrested and most of the specimens failed in flexure. Pre-cracked specimens that were pinned in the body exhibited stable crack growth as well as a shadowing phenomenon. Both pins and the crack surface topography due to this phenomenon are attributed to the increased apparent fracture toughness for these specimens. Similar outcomes were observed through numerical simulations for the models simulated in this study.




Pipes, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Aerospace engineering|Mechanical engineering|Materials science

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