The Influence of Reinforcement Architecture on the Fracture Behavior of Selectively Reinforced Materials

TR Number
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Virginia Tech

A computer-based parametric study of the effect of reinforcement architectures on fracture response of aluminum compact-tension (CT) specimens was performed using the finite element code ABAQUS. A three-dimensional crack propagation procedure based on the crack tip opening angle (CTOA) was developed using Python. Eleven different reinforcement architectures consisting of rectangular and triangular cross-section reinforcements were evaluated. Reinforced specimens produced between 13 and 28 percent higher fracture load than achieved with the non-reinforced case. Reinforcements with blunt leading edges (rectangular reinforcements) exhibited superior performance relative to the triangular reinforcements with sharp leading edges. Relative to the rectangular reinforcements, the most important architectural feature was reinforcement thickness. At failure, the reinforcements carried between 58 and 85 percent of the load applied to the specimen, suggesting that there is considerable load transfer between the base material and the reinforcement. The amount of load transfer is linked to strains experienced by the reinforcement ahead of the crack tip.

Crack Tip Opening Angle, Selective Reinforcement, Crack Propagation